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Sir, — I crave your indulgence to place be- 
fore you the belief that, according to my 
view, and the view of the members of my 
league, there is no substantial reason why 
the waltle-flower should have ever been 
■6ut forward as an Australian floral emblem. 
|.'tudenis of the flora and the history of our 
iaml must be struck with the fact that the 
•ci-jntists (Joseph Banks and Dr. Solauder), 
TV'ho accompanied Captain Cook to Aus- 
tralia, found many plants absolutely new 
to science. So much so. that the great 
tjinnacus said that "New Holland" should 
be called "Banksia." Most prominent 
anijngst our very own flowers is the wara- 
tah. As early as 1793 Sir James !:>mith, 
president of the Royal Society, wrote: — 
"The most beautiful flower that the prolific 
soil of X^ew Holland affords is, by cominon 
consent, both of Europeans and natives, 
the waratah." 

Before that year, a live plant from Sidney 
<;'ovc had reached England, and one was 
trowing in the garden of the Dpwager Lady 
^jft Clifford, near Barnet. Our early 
I^cneers took this flower to their hearts, as 
^e floral representative of the land, and 
li^-er, until 1906, when South Australia set 
'«at to dethrone it, was any other flower 
erer thought of as the national flower of 
Australia. I was born in 1875, and from in- 
^jOcy taught it. Richard T. Baker, ! 
*.L.S., of Sydney, has produced the iinest 
^"xCalidnal Flower Book" in the world, and 
it is devoted to showing how our wonder- 
ftxJ and sti-ikingly handsome national flower 
ler.da itself to the decorative designer. 
Every State of the Commonwealth has it 
in all branches of applied art. The only 
'flower that the natives ever showed with 
their shy pride to the whites was the wara- 
tah. It is native to Queensland, Victoria, 
New South Wales, and 'J'asmania. Jt waa 
relieved by Linnaeus, Smith, Curtis, and 
botanists of their day to be an erabothriimi, 
but an examination of the bracts proved 
that no known familj' of plants could claim 
it. Ju the early "teens" of last century, 
the great Browne named it Telopea (seen 
from afar), and the varieties are "speciosis- 
I simn," (Q. and N.S.W.) "Oreades" 
[(N.S.W. and V.), and '^Truncata" (T.). 
X have na doubt that it will also be found 
in tlie sandstone tracts of the inteiior. 

The wattle has no claim. It is dangerous 
to health. It breeds the most dangerous 
insects and grubs. It is a diseased object 
in less than three years. It is common to 
tlie vv'hole Southern Hemi.«phere. Its 
family (acacia) is conunon to the whole 
world; It cannot be perpetuated in applied 
art. ^Melbourne has honoured. its pioneers. 
I am confronted on all sides with the names 
"Batman,-' "Henty," and so on. AVe are 
not goin^ to insult the choice, as a national 
floAyer, ot piu' pioneers, and we have every 
reason to be highly proud of the flower 
that is the most beautiful of the world in 
applied art, and is the most strikingly hand- 
some, lioth in foi-est^ \vil(L_ and hc^iic gar- 
den. — Yours,&c., ^--^nc^ ^i/ic/^l'y^^Z'f^^ 
..A^UUn;ij*y»>JL^ W. PECK, 

n^.tel F ederal.J)ec. lil, jq^l ^ 

Part /. 





Department of Public Instruction, N.S.W. 

Minister : 

Under Secretary and Director of Education : 

Superintendent of Technical Education : 











^^^HEN searching for architectural conceptions, with which to illustrate 
^^'^1^1' the recent publication on " The Building and Ornamental Stones of 
Australia," it was noticed that the Waratah jiredominated over all 
other native flowers in this form of floral decoration. 

Its frequent occurrence in this direction led to the tracing back of its history 
in Technology, with the result that the subject proved far more interesting than 
was at first thought, the Waratah being fountl figured in almost all branches 
of the liberal arts and sciences to a more or less degree, — specimens of its 
utilisation dating back from almost the first days of the Colony's foundation to 
the present time. 

Its recognition as the leading flower in Applied Art is, therefore, a pleasing 
connecting link between the aesthetic taste of the autochthonous inhabitants 
of this Continent and the British race, for the former named it Waratah, signi- 
fying the finest in the Australian bush, to which decision one might adil, if not 
the whole botanical world. 

This work is now offered as a contribution towards the foundation of a 
National School of Australian Applied Art or Design, and in this connection we 
may quote the words of the late M. Lucien Henry : " As every one must be 
aware, it will require the efforts of several generations to constitute a school of 
Australian Art, the ultimate success of which depends to a great extent on the 
practical encouragement given to the workers by Australians who believe in the 
future of their country, and who are eager to prove that these young States have 
an immense natural supply of material in the way of form and colour, and also 
the necessary brain power to work out of such elements a style of ornamentation 
which may play its part in the development of civilisation under the Southern 

It is especially hoped that these illustrations will inspire the students of our 
Technical Colleges in theii studies of Australian Applied Art, and at the same 
time lead them to appreciate and utilise the native flora for design and form 
from which field they can supply the demands made upon their artistic faculties, 
and so turn to Nature for their technical conceptions, just as did the artists 
of antiquity, where one finds such unique ideas of grace and beauty. 














New South Wales " Waratah " 

Victorian " Waratah " 

Tasmanian "Waratah" 





(a) Brackets. 

(b) Capital. 

(c) Ceiling. 

(d) Columns. 

(e) Crowns. 




Cerathics ... 


Enamel Tiles 


Electric Fittings 


Glassware ... 




Ironwork ... 




Modelling ... 


Silversmith's Art 


Wall Papers 






Windows ... 



(/) Frontals. 

{g) Other Forms of Architecture. 

(h) Pilaster. 

{i) Rosette. 

(k) Tcrra-cotta. 


CONTENTS— Continued. 


Figure i. A Waratah coloured from life specially for this publication 

2. A Waratah coloured from life in 1793 

3. A Victorian Waratah coloured from life 

4. Timber of Victorian Waratah 

5. A Tasmanian Waratah coloured from life ... 

6. Timber of Tasmanian ^^'aratah 

II. Design for a Waratah Column 

23. Design for Book Cover 

24. Design for a Book Cover 

25. Plaque ... 

26. Cup and Saucer with Waratah Decoration ... 

27. Vase with conventionalised Waratah Decoration ... 

28. Japanese Umbrella Stand 

31. Design for Tiles 

32. Design for Tiles 

33. Design for an Electrolier ... . 
35. Clock 

51. Silver-Gilt Buckle 

52. Silver-Gilt Buckle (Enamel) ... 

53. Silver Buckle ... 

54. Design for Wall Paper 

55. Design for Wall Paper 

56. Design for Wall Paper 

57. Design for Wall Paper 

58. Design for Wall Paper 

59. Dado Design 

60. Dado or Frieze Design 

61. Frieze 

62. Frieze 































• > 





























Figure 7. Bracket ... 

Design for Waratah Capital ... 

Waratah Capital in Stone, Newington College, Sydnev, 

Ceiling Decoration 

Stone Column with Waratah Crown 

Stone Frontal at Lands Department, Sydney, N.S.W. 

14. Stone Frontal at Public Library, Sydney, N.S.W. 

15. Stone Frontal at Burns, Philp, & Co., Sydney, N.S.W. 

16. Spandril with Waratah Decoration ... 

17. lender the Clock Tower, General Post Office, Sydney 

18. Statue to Allan Cunningham, sliowing artistic treatment 

19. Design for a Pilaster ... 

20. Rosette (Waratah Design) 







t of War 



CONTENTS— Continued. 

Black and White Illustrations — Continued. 

Figure 21. Rosette (Rose Design)... 
22. Design in Terra-cotta ... 

29. China Pedestal and Jardiniere 

30. Jug and Basin ... 
34. Water Bottle or Decanter ... 

36. Ironwork 

37. Ironwork 

38. Ironwork 

39. Wrought-iron Gate 

40. Cast-iron Gate ... 

41. Bronze Tablet ... 

42. Lace Design 

43. Specimen of Montmellick Needlework 

44. Plaster Capital ... 

45. Plaster Ventilator 

46. Repousse Work 

47. Silversmith's Work 

48. The King's Trowel, used in the laying of the Foundation Stone of the 
Commonwealth Offices, London, 1913 

49. Foundation Trowel used by Lord Denman when laying the Foundation 
Stone, Commonwealth Capital... 

50. Trowel used by the Prime Minister (Hon. Andrew Fisher) when laj'ing 
the Foundation Stone of the Commonwealth Bank in Sydney 

63. Coloured Windows and Leaded Light 

64. Leaded Windows, Technological Museum, Sydney 

65. Wood Plaque ... 

66. Carved Chair 

67. Fruits 
Harbinger of Spring 















(i) Articles. 

(a) The Breath of Spring 

(fe) The Waste of Waratahs 

(c) The Majestic Waratah 

(d) A National Flower 

(2) A New South Wales Waratah Legend by M. Henry 

(3) A Tasmanian Waratah Legend 



I wish to acknowledge the help rendered me by Mr. D. Cannon when tliis book 
was going through the press. t-, -r td 

N.S.W. Waratah 

(Telopea speciusissin:a , R.Er.1 

Ha! I nut sizc.^ 



'^IT'O the majority of Australians, the word "Waratah" has, perhaps, a rather 
\U/ limited geographical significance, for most people regard its application 
as referring to a plant only found somewhere near Port Jackson, and 
producing wonderfully gorgeous flowers. 

By the help of a work on this particular plant— ("The Glory of the AustraUan 
Bush"), it is hoped to make more generally known, that such restriction of 
geographical area is not correct, for both Victoria and Tasmania can claim a 
Waratah, as well as New South Wales; and so it is seen that these marvellous 
flowers extend over a fairly large area of this Continent. The fact remains, how- 
ever, that Walesians have prized and utilised their Waratah for decorative ])ur- 
poses far more extensively than either the Victorians orTasmanians ; the reason 
for such neglect in the latter instance is not easily explained, for the southern 
Waratahs possess features and colourings quite equal, and in some respects 
superior, to those of the New South Wales plant. This indifference on the part 
of our Southern neighbours is rather to be regretted, for the Victorian and 
Tasmanian Waratahs lend themselves to almost similar treatment in Apj)lied 
Art as the New South Wales plant of that ilk. Each has its own characteristics — 
a decided advantage, for this group of trees and shrubs gives the technologist 
a large field upon which to draw for artistic treatment. The Victorian Waratah, 
however, is the arboreal king of them all, for it attains tree size, the timber 
being very ornamental is not unlike that of the American Sycamore, and 
will be more fully mentioned in its botanical sequence. 

Australia felix, the early geographers were pleased to call our continent; 
and well might the author of that sentence feel proud were he alive to-day, for 
happy indeed is Australia in possessing so many natural advantages over othei 
Continents. But not the least of her happy moments should be when she contem- 
plates how Nature has blessed this land with a peculiar wealth of foim and colour 
in it? floral kingdom. 

The early days of most nations are hidden in the mist of pre-historic times, 
and so th3 rise or beginning of their artistic conceptions is lost in obscurity, but 
no such fate lies with settlers of this Island Continent. 

A little over a hundred years marks ths age of the Australian nation, yet 
should an observant strangei land on out shores he would find that a characteris- 
tic decorative art has already passed the embryonic stage, and that the influence 
of Nature's lavishness in floral forms is becoming discernible in tlie develop- 
ment of Apphed Art. This is only as it should be, and it speaks well for the 
powers of observation of the Australian in his natural environment. 


But it is necessary that a step further should be taken, for the day has come 
when a more distinct national style of ornamentation should adorn our archi- 
tectural structures and other productions of Applied Art, and so individualise 
Australian Art with the character of its own natural surrovmdings. 

It will be seen from the plates produced that our native flora is held in high 
repute for decoration by our artists, a taste which illustrates the adaptability 
of Australian plant forms and colour in the field of Technology. 

It was when using, for purposes of design, the immediate natural objects, 
both fauna and flora, that the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Etruscans 
became so excellent in their skill while executing and designing their bronzes, 
terra-cottas, enamels, pottery, and textile fabrics. Similarly there is little doubt 
that Australian workers in these subjects have, ready to their eye and hand, forms 
as pure and as adaptable as had the older nations. 

Our own aborigines, whilst possessing some artistic skill, yet were not wan- 
ting in admiration of the native vegetation, and their selection as first favourite 
was the Waratah. The white man was no sooner brought in touch with Nature 
here than his perceptive faculty very soon saw that the Australian bush possessed 
no rival to the Waratah for beauty and colour, and later had the patriotic 
feeling to adopt it as the national emblem. 

And this is not to be wondered at, when it is admitted by nearly all our 
artists, past and present, that this flower is facile princeps the best from which to 
design decorative work in Australia, if not from any other country, and it is this 
feature of the plant that has moved the author to bring before the Technical 
world the numerous instances of its various forms of adaptation in Technology 
since 1788, the date of the First Settlement. 

This utihsation of the native flora has, in the author's opinion, laid the foun- 
dation of what will eventually become a distinctly national form of decoration — 
an achievement that has probably no parallel in any modem country. 

Although this volume is devoted to the Waratah alone, yet that is not our 
only indigenous floral specimen used for decoration. The Flannel Flower, 
perhaps, ranks second to the Waratah for this purpose, whilst Stenocarpus, Banksia, 
Fern Fronds, &c., are also found to please the artist, but the Waratah is the 
principal motive of them all. In Applied Art it is first favourite amongst almost 
every branch, as here instanced. 

As the Acantluis and other exotic forms of decoration are still much in evi- 
dence, the question resolves itself into this : Are we Australians, because the 
Hindoo, Egyptian, and Greek utilised tlie kotus flower, Acanthus leaf, &c., for 
designs to decorate their columns, fiiezes, fat^ades of temples and palaces, never 
to employ any othei motive in our decoration, and in this imitative mood show 
a lamentable lack of originality or imagination, whilst surrounded as W2 are with 
forms of great adaptability for oui ai tijtic conceptions ? 


The illustrations here given will show tlu't there is a distinct effort to depart 
fiom this ancient conventionalisation, but we want a more emphatic one, and in 
this connection a National School of Design, so much needed now, has a magnificent 
field in which to work, and wc look hojietully to piesent and future generations 
to evolve a typical school of design just as the old Egyptians and desks did, 
for the Australian has at hand forms as pure and adai)tal)le as had these older 

In this volume each spece; of Waiatah is described, and illustrations are 
given of its utilisation by the various aitists who have left their impiess on 
Australian decoration in the field of Applied Art. 


(a) The New South Wales Waratah 

(Telopea speciosissima, R.Br.) 
Figure I. 


Perhaps no native plant-name has become so interwoven in Australian 
history as that given by the aborigines to this unique specimen of our floral 
world. Nor is such to be wondered at wlien one views the species in its autoch- 
thonous habitat, flourishing in all its glory and pride of colour among its less 
fortunate congeners of the Australian bush. 

Australia boasts, and rightly so, of a wonderful tlora with its beauties, 
variety of colours, and its uniqueness, all of which readily appealed to the 
artistic instincts of the earliest botanists who landed on its sliores, as well as the 
first settlers, whilst the stories taken back to the Old Country concerning our 
native flora aroused great curiosity. 

Such, then, was the effect of our flora on the minds of the white man when 
he first arrived here, but at the same time he found in the " savage breast " there 
also existed an admiration for Nature's botanical wonders and a discriminating 
one, too, for it was discovered that the aborigine had already made his selection 
of the king and pride of the bush, — his choice resting on the majestic Waratah. 

In 1793 there was published in London a work by Dr. Smith on the Zoology 
and Botany of New Holland, which was illustrated with some very fine hand- 
coloured plates taken from life, and there amongst the latter section of Natural 
History figures the Waratah. This plate has been reproduced by the aid of 


chromatic photography for pubhcation (Figure II), as it illustrates the artistic 
delineation and colouring of those times. It is a faithful replica of the original, 
the colours of which have remained fast, although painted in 1793, well over 100 
years ago, and these colours have been a source of admiration to many author- 
ities in Sydney on chromatic work. But what is of still greater value as a 
record is that the colours are true to life ; nor has the botanical draftsmanship 
of those days fallen short in any details of morphological outline, for these are 
quite accurate, and equal to any depicting of this genus since that period. 
Moreover, this illustration will be invaluable to scientific generations of the 
future, who are thus provided with a figure portraying correctly the systematic 
features in 1793 of the largest flowering Waratah, and also will thus be able 
to note what (if any) changes have taken place during different periods of time. 
So here will be a gem for the evolutionist, mutationist, or the behever in 
constancy of species. 

The letterpress accompanying this beautiful drawing is particularly inter- 
esting, for it commences with these words : — 

THE moft magnificent plant which the prolific foil 
of New Holland affords is, by common confent both 
of Europeans and Natives, the Waratah. It is more- 
over a favourite with the latter, upon account of a rich 
honeyed juice which they Tip from its flowers. Our 
figure was taken from a coloured drawing made from 
the wild plant, compared with very fine dried fpecimens 
fent by Mr. White. Only one garden in Earope, we 
believe, can boaft the pofTefTion of this rarity, that of the 
Dowager Lady de Clifford, at Nyn Hall, near Barnet, 
who received living plants from Sidney Cove, which 
have not yet flowered. The feeds brought to this 
country have never vegetated. 

Fig. 2. 

So that, whatever divergences of opinion may have existed on things in 
general in the minds of the white settlers and the black inhabitants of those early 
days, there was at least one consensus of opinion betwean them, and that an 
artistic one, viz., their aesthetic estimate of the Warat?h. No one has ever yet 
produced a work on the artistic side of our aborigines, because it has been generally 
accepted that they possessed little (if any) such pleasing character as aesthet- 
icism in their whole nature. Here at least is one instance of its occurrence that 
may perhaps have been overlooked. -" 

The plant, which is known by this name, was, of course, found in those days 
around Sydney, but it has since been discovered to have a much wider geograph- 
ical distribution, for it occurs in the coast district from the Clyde River to the 


The New South Wales Waratah 

iTelopea speciosissima, R.Br.) 

A reproduction by chromatic photography of the hand-coloured plate by Sowerby, 

in Smith's Botany of New Holland, published in 1793. 

Fig. II. 


Hunter and on the Dividing Range. It is very plentiful in certain jjarts ol the 
Blue Mountains, as, for instance, the road from Leura to Mount Hay. 

The Victorian Waratah has, perhaps, a greater range than the New South 
Wales species, whilst the Tasmanian is also fairly well distributed in that island. 
These two are fully described under their respective headings. 

New South Wales, then, has not a monopoly of the Waratah, ior, as stated 
above, it is found in three out of the six States ol the Commonwealth, but at the 
same time it must be remembered that it does not occur in any other quarter of 
the globe, so that the expression " the land c' the Waratah " is applicable only 
to Australia. 

The extent to which the Waratah has been used in Decorati\'(' Art since 
its first discovery clearly demonstrates that its possibilities in this direction are 
of a high order, and these, it is hoped, will be fully proved by the accompanying 
illustrations, which are also given to show its utilisations in various branches of 

As the New South Wales Waratah was the first of the genus recorded, it 
has chronologically, at any rate, the prior claim for distinction, and so is taken 
first in the series. 


It never attams tree size, and so ranks as a shrub, which sometimes reaches 
the height of 12 feet. The leav^es are irregular in form, the upper edges 
being toothed, and the lower portion tapering into a long stalk, enlarged at the 
base ; the midrib and lateral veins are very distinct. 

The head or inflorescence is composed of a large number of individual crim- 
son flowers surrounded by large acuminate bracts, also crimson coloured. The 
fruit (a follicle) is recurved and measures 3 to 4 inches in length, the seeds 
having a wing about ^ inch long. All these features are distinctly seen in the 
coloured illustration — Smith's figure of 1793, Botany of New Holland. It 
flowers in September and October. 

" Telopea," from the Greek Telopos — seen from afar; and '^peciosissima, 
from the Latin — very beautiful. 


When one sees what designs the old Egyptians produced from the simple 
Lotus flower, the Greeks from the Honeysuckle, and the Acanthus leaf— flowers 
and leaves which possess lew of the quahties for conventionalisation such as 
are found m the Waratah, it will readily be admitted how fortunate Australians 


are in possessing so fine a floral specimen as the Waratah lor decorative purposes. 
The individual flowers are capable of almost innumerable treatment in ornamen- 
tation, whilst the bracts give tha artist a splendid field for line work in the setting 
of these, and to all must be added the delightful irregularity of the leaf form, 
with its pronounced reticulations of the venation, both offering sufficient material 
for producing a rococo, fohaceous effect. 

The entire plant lends itself to such a boldness of artistic ideas in all 
branches of Applied Art that it has few compeers amongst the representatives 
of the whole floral world, certainly not in the Australian, judging by its numerous 
apphcations (over other native flowers) in architecture, and the different 
l)ranches of decoration in Technology that one sees on every hand. 

It is impossible to say now, or to give the name of the individuals who 
idealised or conventionalised the Lotus, Acanthus, Honeysuckle, or Iris, but in 
this young country of a little over ? century's growth, a few of the artists' names 
may be mentioned who have introduced our native flora in dec orative Applied 
Art. In this connection the Sydney Technical College staff stands high and 
perhaps first, and taken chronologically Mr. Lucien Henry, the first teacher of 
Art, was par excellence a designer from nature, whilst the late Parnell Johnson 
was also particularly clever in his original renderings of our flora in technical 
skill. As of old, many have left only their floral inscriptions in stone or iron — 
their names have passed away, but their works live on. In Mr. L. Henry, Aus- 
tralia certainly had an artist possessing real genius, and his originality in design 
and other fields of fine and Applied Art will live long in the annals of New South 
Wales technical education. Some of his works adorn the walls of our Technical 
College, but what is probably a complete collection of his originals is now on 
exhibition at this Museum, several of which are reproduced here. They are 
a splendid proof of the fertility of his brain, for they cover original designs 
from our native fauna and flora in architecture, ironwork, wall-papers, glass, 
stained windows, jewehery, china, chandeliers, electric lights, tiles, horology, &c., 
In all these branches of Technology, strength is given to his work by an absence 
of fictitious details with which he appears to have had no dealings in his 
botanical elaborations. 

To the list of these names must now be added, that of Mr. C. Toms, artist of 
this Museum, and present Lecturer in Decorative Art at the Technical College, 
Sydney. I am also indebted to these three for the many conventional renderings 
of the Waratah in the different trades branches. 



The Victorian Waratah 

(Telopea oieades, F. v. M.) 
Fig. HI. 



(b) The Victorian Waratah. 

(Telopea oreades, F. v. M.) 
Figure III. 


This Waratah was first rectndcd l)y Baron von Mutllcr in iS6i, Ijeing dis- 
covered l)y him in theNangatta Mountains and Canus River District, Gi])psland, 
Victoria, so that although it has since been fouiul in soutiu-rn New South Wales, 
its original wide geographical distrilnition entitles it to be regarded as Victoria's 


The species was originally descriljed as a shrul), but in the ranges of Gipps- 
land and the south-east corner of New South Wedes it attains tree size, the timber 
specimens exhibited in this Museum beiug taken from a tree measuring over a 
foot in diameter at the butt. The Ijark is thin and moderately smooth, of a dark 
chocolate color. The leaves are obovate, oblong, or lanceolate, acute or obtuse, 
4 to 8 inches long, tapering into a long petiole, entira oi rarely with a few teeth 
at the end, usually bluish underneath ; the veins, however, are not so well marked 
as in the New South Wales Waratah {T. spcciosissima). -dhhough the midrib is just 
as prominent. The flowers are similar to those of that s[)ecies, but fewer in the 
head, with smaller bracts. The fruit, a follicle, measures from j to 4 inches in 

" Telopea " is from the Greek Telopos, — meaning seen from afar, and 
" oreades " from the Greek Oreias,—a mountain nymi)h, in referring to the habitat 
of the tree. 


The blooms, although equally highly coloured like thos3 of the New South 
Wales Waratah, are not quite so gorgeous, as there are fewer individual flowers 
in the head, whilst the bracts are a less pronounced feature; nevertheless, it has 
artistic features or characters not possessed by the first dssciibed i)lant for the 
species attains tree sizs and produces a pale-coloured i)rettily-niarked timl^er, 
equal in figure to the finest American Sycamore, in which respect, therefore, at 
least it is superior to the New South Wales Waratah. 



The (tracts are less conspicuous than those of its northern congener, but at 
the same time they harmonise proportionately in number with the indi vidua) 
flowers in each head, and these characters in the hands of a master of decoration 
could be utilised for artistic effect and conventionalisation. 

In certain directions in Decorative Art it has, perhaps, an advantage over 
the New South Wales Waratah, for, having less flowers in the head and smaller 
bracts, it lends itself to better treatment in basso-relief as against alto-relief. 


The Victorians should feel proud of their Waratah, as it grows to a forest 
tree, and yields a beautifully light coloured fairly hard timber with a delicate, 
yet neat, elegant figure when cut on the quarter, as shown in the coloured plate, 
equal ni figure to American sycamore. It is eminently suited for furniture and 
cabinet work. Figure 4. 



1 he Tasmanian Waratah 

(Telupea truncata, R.Br.) 
Fiu'. V. 


(c) The Tasmanian Waratah. 

(Telopea truncata, R.Br.) 
Figfure V. 


This elegant shrub was first made known to science by Lahillonhere in liis 
work '• Plants of Xew Holland," i)ublished in 1804 under the name of Emboth- 
rium truucatitm. f)ut was afterwards placed by Robert Brown under a new generic 
name. Telopea. in the Trans. Linn. Soc, X., 198, in i8og. 

The name Embothriiim was established by R. and G. Foster in 1776, being 
applied to a South American plant somewhat resembling our Waratah, but 
differing principally from Telopea in the absence of floral bracts. 


In point ol size this Waratah ranks next to the Victorian, being larger than 
that of Xew South Wales, and smaller than the Victorian. The maximum height 
is given by Rodway as usually 5 to 10 feet. It very closely resembles the 
Victorian species in inflorescence and foliage; the flowers, however, being silky- 
ferruginous as distinct from the glabrous character of the other species. The 
bracts of the two (Victorian and Tasmanian) vary very littk in character, and 
the number of individual flowers in the head is about the same in each ca.^e. The 
fruits are the smallest of the three species, measuring 2 inches long. 


This Telopea, as inferred from its local name, is endemic to Tasmania, being 
" very common, principally on mountains." 


The Australian's admiration for the ^^'aratah is not confined to tlie Xew 
South Wales representative of the faniih', as shown by the following excerpt 
from Geoffrey Smith's book "A Xaturalist in Tasmania," pp. 54 and 55. published 
in 1909: — 

" The Waratah {Telopea trunc<.<ia) is a small tree or shrub, sometimes 
attaining 20 feet in height, and bearing the most beautiful scarlet flowers 
which are so much prized by the colonists for decoration that the tree is 


becoming scarce in the frequented parts of Mount Wellington. The flowers 
are arranged in a gracefully clustered head, and each separate flower consists 
of a curved style, which, before the flower is ripe, is inserted into a cap 
formed by the })eriapth; but on ripening the jierinnth splits, exposing the 
stamens and setting the style free. The vivid scarlet colouring of these 
flowers, shining out amongst the sombre blue-greens of the gum forests, is 
certainly one of the most beautiful sights that the Tasmanian bush aflords. 
Although scarce in the frequented parts, the Waratah grows in the most 
splendid profusion at the source of the North-west Bay River across the top 
of the mountain ; owing to the exposed situation, it here takes on the growth 
of a low bush, but with a mass of bloom that is really marvellous." 

Although so highly appreciated by this author in particular, and the Tas- 
manian in general for decoration, as stated by him, yet it would appear, as far as 
I have been able to ascertain, that no attempt has been made to introduce it into 
Applied Art in that beautiful island. Perhaps this might be used as an argument 
in favour of the advancement of technical education there in at least one direc- 
tion, for it seems a pity that so fine a sj^ecimen of our wonderful flora should 
waste " its sweetness in the desert air " of local application in Decorative Art. 


In no way does this Waratah fall short in this direction from its Victorian 
congener. It has at least found its way into literature {vide Appendix.) 


This is a rather smaller tree than the Victorian Waratah, and has a darker 
heartwood, but in other respects it has the facies of that timber, and could be 
utilised for similar work, although, of course, on a smaller scale. (Figure VI.) 







-> ^f 


» V 


> • ■ 

. ' ' ' 



(a] Bracket. 

There appears to be no portion of decorative architecture to which the sul)- 
ject of this work does not lend itself, and no one recognised this l)ettfr than 

Mr. L. Henry, although his original ideas 
.iVL' too many to produce here, hut a few 
will !)(_• given. He has, inter alia, left on 
record a design for a bracket (Figure 7), 
and if we follow his adaptation of the 
Waratah, we see how dexterously he 
has placed it on the swell of a bracket 
and produced decoration at once. The 
heads of the individual flowers form a 
beautiful centre or jiyramid of balls, 
graduating in size from the base to the 
apex; next the persistent bracts (eight 
in this case), rising from a circle, are by 
undulations boldly treated, the ])()ints 
forming a pleasing central star or figure 
for a background. Then, surmounted 
in the upper portions, are three leaves 
having a slightly exaggerated venation 
and irregular edges, the whole producing 
a bold, but consistent conception of Horal 
design. whilst throughout, tht^ ])lant iden- 
tification is well maintained. Not many 
flowers could be so utilised, and even 
these only by a master hand, as in this 
Fig. 7 example. 


(b) Capitals. 
It is particularly adaptable for the form of architecture as shown in the capital 
of the column Figure 8, the tips of the bracts being incurved and more of the 
individual flower shown than in Figure 7. 
The whole also conveys an idea of strengtli 
and solidity. 

In capital decoration it has found favour 
with local architects and stone carvers, 
and one conception (Figure 9) is here given 

showing it carved as a capital in Sydney 
sandstone. A richness of invention is 
])roduced without, in the least, destroying 
the identity of the flower. This column » 
forms part of the colonnade at Newington 
College, Sydney. 

Fig. 9. 

(c) Ceilings. 

All credit must be gi\^en to the captains or leaders of Industrial Art in 
Sydney ior tiie attention given lo or tlie employment of our native flora in 
their various manuiael ures. The illustration (Mguu' 10) is one of several 
different designs from the factory of Messrs. Wunderlich, Sydney, and is a 
reproduction of a ceiling j)anel decoiated with the Waratah. Perhaps more 
conventionalisation is introduced here than generally obtains when dealing with 


this subject. Xcvrithclcss, it only goes to show that, however much couven- 
tionahsation is introduced, the I)()tanical identilication is stih in evidence, 
which is a great i)oint in its favour as a national llower. In tact, it seems 

// ' 


Fig. 10. 

impossible for the designer to carry his art so far as to conventionalise it 
beyond recognition, as the old masters of Technology have almost done with 
the Lotus, Acanthus, Honeysuckle, and Fleur-de-lis. 

(d) Column. 

The Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian columns are well known subjects of archi- 
tecture of both ancient and modern times, and few have cared to de])art from these 
designs, but in \-iew of such a subject to which this article is devoted, the Austra- 
lian might now well lay his claim to add an original one in an Australian colunm. 
To Mr. L. Henry such a structure presented no diliiculties, and the whole one 
reproduced here (Figure ii) gives his conception in this direction. The capital 
composed of inner Ijracts with their swelling bases and recurved ti])s, surrounding 
the flowers, which in turn support the cap, gi\-es an idea of strength and erect- 
ness. A row of smaller cniter bracts forms a cernuous ring l)elow. 



At the base of the cohimn the leaves are very ingeniously arranged, and 
finish off well an artistic conception, for by a series of imbrications of the leaves 
a more decorative effect is produced than by showing them on the flat, whilst the 
enlarged base of the petiole is even laid under tribute to produce an atlditional 
touch or rounding-off of the wIkjIc originality. This column would be very effec- 
tive in cast iron or steel with the capital and base painted in natural colours, as 
shown by the author in his original drawing. 

(e) Crowns. 

For the crown of a column it is a 
formidable rival to the well-known cone 
of the Pine trees so often used for this 
purpose, and one instance is given in 
Figure 12 of its utilisation in this direc- 
tion in a Sydneypublic i)ark. It illus- 
trates another form of its versatility 
in architectural treatment. 

(f) Frontals. 

It is by no means uncommon to see 
the Waratah thus utilised by the Aus- 
tralian sculptor in his architectural 
decoration, for, like his prototype of 
old, he, too, turns to the botanical world 
for inspiration in curve work and design, 
and ill this instance has selected the 
Waratah as first favourite, for to-day 
it is more used than any other Aus- 
tralian flower. In frontal work it is a 
fine acquisition to boldness of treat- 
ment, while it looks well and effective, 
and a few exami)les are here produced 
showing its adaptability in architectural 
work. The material mostly used is the 
famous Sydney sandstone, this being 
close at hand. There are, however, 
other sandstones in New South Wales that are very suitable for carving, as, for 
instance, the Ravensfield sandstone, near West Maitland. This is a close, fine- 
grained stone, and takes a g(;od arris. Figure ij shows an east ])(,'(lnnent 
to the Lands Dei)artment Building, Sydney, the artist usijig on the t\nip;inum 

Fig. 12. 




Waratah Column. 

Fi^. 1 1. 


only Waratahs lor his tioral (Iccorations. which are cut in liigh lehet, the leaves 
and flowers forming the main mass, whilst the central shield is supported by a 
plant on each side. 

In Figure 14, not only is the tynii)anum tilled with \\'aratah>, hut the edges 
of the shield are formed of a wreath of Waratah leaves carrying a bloom at the 
to}), on which stands a Royal crown. This is at the main entrance of the 
Pubhc Library, Sydney. 

In Figure 15. the architect and sf:ul])t()r were probably Scotchmen; but 
evidently next to then- national flower, the Waratah of their adopted country 
must have ranked as second place, foi whilst surmounting the work with the 
symbol of patriotism of the land of the Heather, they have sui)[)orted the shield 
on either side with the Waratah. 

ig) Other forms of Architectural Decoration. 

Its utilisation seems nev^er to be exhausted in architecture, for it is used in 
various ways, and in spandril work an illustration has been taken from a 
Sydney public institution (Figure 16). At the Sydney Post Olftce, the facade 
under the clock tower (Figure 17) the Waratah contributes to that chaste yet 
ornate decoration, for the rampant Lion and Unicorn of the Imperial Coat of 
Arms are standing in a field of Waratahs, Roses, Thistles, and Shamrocks. 

The greatest botanical collector and explorer associated with the name of 
Australia is Allan Cunningham, as he travelled thousands of miles in quest of 
Nature's botanical wonders in this great continent. When the late Sir Henry 
Parkes commissioned an Italian sculptor to commemorate this great man in 
stone, he left him a free hand in executing his design. Few care to challenge 
the artistic instinct of a countryman of Michael xA.ngelo, so when we see that 
Signor Sani selected the Waratah to ornament the statue (Figure 18), he evidently 
chose what he regarded as Nature's triumph in the botanical world in this quarter 
of the globe, and it might be added his choice has been endorsed l>y all Australiau 
artists sine - the foundation of the colony in 17S8. 



' po^^sjg 

Fig. 14 



Fig. lb. 

Fig. ir. 



Fig. 19. 

conventionalisation has 
not in the least lessened 
or obscured the identity 
of the plant. It could be so 
carved, moulded, &c. The 
symmetrical arrangement 
of the whole produces 
quite a geometrical figure, 
and it would indeed be 
difficult to excel it in any 
simplification of natural 
form, and yet perfect in 
its technique. The rosette 
of Europe (Figure 21- 
from the Middle Ages t<> 
the present time is given 
for comparison with 

(h) Pilaster. 
Figure ig is a particularly 
effective utilisation of the War- 
atah without conventionalisa- 
tion. Two large Waratahs bal- 
ance the top, and these are 
supported by three smaller ones 
below, all emanating from a 
cluster of Waratah leaves at 
the base. The original is in 
colour, and the effect is delight- 
fully Australian. 

(i) Rosette. 

The effec in this case (Figure 
20) is exceedingly pleasing. The 
artist shows by a simplicity of 
delineation what a happy 
combination can be made of 
the flower, bracts, and leaves. 
Nothing could be better than 
the star arrangement of these 
:Mrt~, .\1^c\ yet here. also the 


I n H ( i I I 11 f c > 





ri I ( i a a \ 

Fi^. 20 



Mr. Henry's. In this case it will 
be seen that very little remains 
for an identification of its fioral 
origin — the rose. The choice 
of European or Australian 
rosette is left with the reader. 
The English rosette, illuminated 
with electric lights, was used in 
several instances in the Coro- 
nation decorations in Sydne}-. 
Let us hope that some patriotic 
Australian will design a War- 
atah rosette for the next illu- 
minations, whenever they may 

Fig. 21. 


(k) Terra Cotta. 

This form of decoration is not 
much employed in architecture, 
yet Mr. L. Henry could not let 
the opportunity pass of giving 
an idea in this direction, and, 
as usual, he favours the Wara- 
tah, as seen in Figure 22. 
Entwined with it is the artistic 
Flannel Flower. 

Fig. 22. 



Only recently has the Waiatah been utilised in this trade for decorative 
purposes, to which it is now found it lends itself to artistic treatment. 

The New South Wales Government Printer, Mr. W. A. Gutlick, has produced 
in his department some tine specimens of bookbinding, illustrating its adapt- 
abilitv, and two specimens are here reproduced (Figiues 2^ and 24). 

Fig. 23. 



'Waratah. Flannel Flower, Sturt's Desert Pea. 


Fi^. 24. 



It would take up too niurli 
Art in which the Waratah has be 
acceptance than with cer- 
amic artists in their cliina 
paintings, and foremost 
amongst these was Louis 
Bilton, who, as stated 
above, was sent to Aus- 
traha by those famous 
potters, Messrs. Doulton 
and Sons, to depict 
sketches of the Austrahan 
flora from hfe for decora- 
tive purposes, such draw- 
ings to be utihsed by that 
lirm in its various porce- 
lain manufactures. His 
sketches ranged over a 
wide field, and were not 
confined to one particular 
group of flowers. His 
verdict in this connection 
was that our native flora 
lends itself to artistic 
decoration above that of 
other countries, and so 
one result of his journev 
to Australia was that 


space to enumerate all the branches of Applied 
come a favourite ; but in none has it found more 

Fi^. 29. 

Fig. 30. 

Doulton's Australian floral 
designs on their china 
were much admired; but 
as the series of vases, &c., 
were not continued, they 
have become rare, and are 
now bringing fancy prices 
by connoisseurs. Several 
specimens arc exhibited 
in the Techno'ogical Mu- 


The one illustrated is from a plaque 
in the possession of Mr. John Shorter, of 
Parramatta, which he kindly lent for re- 
production. It is called the Waratah 
plaque, that plant predominating in the 
tout-ensemble. The clusters of cream- 
co'oured flowers are the Wonga Vine 
[Tecoma australis). It measures i6 inches 
in diameter, and is tin chef-d'oeuvre, the 
bold colour of the Waratah making a 
conspicuous object in this piece of ceramic 
art. L. Bilton's name can just be made 
out at the bottom of the plate, a little 
towards the right. Fig. 25. 

Figure 26 shows the latest chinaware 
in colour of Australian floral decoration in 
porcelain by Doulton, and is now on sale 
in Sydney. It has special claims for recog- 
nition here, since the original design is the 
work of Miss Shorter, a student of our 
Granville Technical College, under Mr. A. 

The design or conventionalisation was 
made in order to settle a discussion as to 
whether so large a flower as the Waratah 
could be used for decoration on such small 
objects as a teacup and saucer. The 
diminution or reduction of the flower has 
in no way lessened its effectiveness for 
such purposes — at least, that is the opinion 
of those competent to judge in such 
matters. It is another instance of the 
almost endless treatment of this wonderful 
flower in Technical Art. The ground is the 

white of the china clay, the Waratah requiring no aids to emphasize natural 

colours such as the Wattle demands. 

Here we see that the general facies of the plant is in no way impaired by this 

miniature conception, for the straight stems emanating from the base of clusters 

of radiating leaves is a good replica effect of the original in nature of thi^ bold, 

uj)riglit, majestic representative of our unique flora. 


A Waratah Plaque. 

Painted from living specimens by Doulton's artist, LOUIS BILTON 
Australia in the Eighties. 

Fig. 25. 

■when visiting 


Designed by a Student of Granville Technical College, for Doulton. 

Fi^. 26. 



Vase Decoration, by a Student of the Technical 
Collegfe, Adelaide, S.A. 

(Miss L. H. HOWIE). 
Fig. 2 7. 



It must be rct^ardcd as a compliment tcj our local Technical Institution that 
such a firm, with a world-wide reputation for its artistic production, shcndd liave 
accepted design work from an Australian student — a true rendering, indeed, 
of the Empire spirit, for surely our students can receive no greater acknowledg- 
ment of their tt'cimical talent than this. 

In speaking of ceramics, it may here be mentioned that the Japanese have 
also placed on the Sydney market, vases, 6ic., decorated with the Waratah. 
The specimen illustrated under Fig. 2.S can hardly claim artistic merit, but it 
is of interest, in that the decoration was executed by a Japanese, these speci- 
mens of china being exported from Japan to Australia. 

It shows that even in that land of Chrysanthemums — we might almost say 
worship — the artists have turned to the Waratah for inspiration in ornamenta- 
tion. At the Technological Museum are scnue fine specimens of Waratah decora- 
tion in china from several artists in the different States of the Commonwealth. 
The conventionalised decoration of the Waratah in Fig. 27 is the work of a 
student of the Adelaide Technical College, South Australia. 

Figures 29 and 30 illustrate ceramics from D(julton's. 


The tile industry is at present only in its infancy in Australia, but designs 
for such ai tides are not wanting amongst our technical Art students. In 
Figure 31 Mr. Henry has placed an unconventionalised Waratah as a base, 
and has brought other samples of our flora to his aid. The ground is 
royal blue, and on this, radiating from the top Waratah, are two banana 
leaves in natural tints, which will be readily recognised by all Australians. 
A spray of Flannel Flowers is })laced parallel with each oblique l)anana leaf, whilst 
the whole is surmounted by four " flowers " of Slenocaypiis siiiitaliis, placed in 
varying planes. The semi-circle at the base is in yellow, rayed and shaded, 
the centre a brick red, whilst the Greek pattern at the base is green. 

In Figure 32 is a group of twelve tiles (Doulton), so designed that, by a very 
slight conventionalisation, a most effective Waratah pattern is produced. The 
ground is blue, and the edges of the floral lines and leaves are raised in lightish 
lines, otherwise the natural colours are reproduced. The whole may be described 
as a studv of the Waratah in Faience tiles. 




The Town Hall of Sydney has some very good electric mural brackets 
decorated with the Waratah in wrought iron; but the accompanying design 
(Figure jj) of an electrolier is from the facile pen and brush of Mr. L. Henry. 
The centre piece of the ceiling is shown in black in section. The number of 
illuminating lamps, of course, would be regulated according to the size of the hall 
or room to be lighted, but in any case it would add considerably to the attrac- 
tiveness of its surroundings. 


Even this branch of technical skill did not 
escape the versatile conceptions of Mr. L. 
Henry, for here (in Figure 34) is shown a 
suggestion for a decanter or water-bottle of a 
Waratah design. 

The stopper is formed of a Waratah, with 
two rows of bracts, one incurved and the other 
recurved as a base. The top of the neck or 
mouth of the bottle has also a similar number 
of bracts, which meet at the tips. The body 
is formed by an inverted liloom, the individual 
flowers, slightly conventionalised, being ar- 
ranged in regular rows, increasing in size 
upwards, and over these are two rows of bracts, 
surmounted by a couple of leaves to form the 

Fig. 34. 


No branch of Technology appears to have escaped the far-reaching per- 
ception of Mr. L. Henry, for here (Figure 35) is reproduced his handiwork 
in the form of a clock decoration. In the original design the eight rays are 
in brass or gold, and the six stems of the individual Waratahs run at the 
back of the clock, and arc made to curve at the bottom, and so form a support 
of the clock on a pHiith. An individual stalk runs from each, and attaclies it to 
the plinth. The two bottom Waratahs are in bud, or, more correctly, enclosed 
in the unexpandcd bracts. A sufficiency of foHage is used in order to give the 
necessary decorative eilcct. 


Design for Tiles— decorated with Stenocarpus, Flannel 
Flower, and Waratah. 

Fig. 51. 



An Electrolier. 

Fig. 33. 


Designed by L. HENRY. 
r 1 J ^ t> 


w ^ 

Fi^'. 36. 


Figure 36 is a conception of the W'aratah in ironwork, wliicli at once presents 
the strength and boldness that should naturally characterise this class of work. 
It would be ver}' effective surmounting a wrought-iron railing. The only con- 
ventionalisation is with the unexpanded individual bloom on the right, with 
its artistically curved, balanced leaves. 

Fife^ 38. 



Decorative Ironwork at the Sydney Technical College. 

Equally effective is the stove (Figure 37) which Mr. P. Griffiths, of the 

Technical College, Sydney, has decorated with the Waratah. 

wrought-iron now adorns the room of the 

Superintendent of Tech- 
nical Education Mr. J. 

Figures 39 and 40 are 
designs for a cast and 
wrought iron gate res- 

In Figure 38 is given 
a piece of work in 
wrought-iron, also made 
by Mr. Griffiths, Teacher 
of Blacksmi thing at 
the Sydney Technical 

This specimen of 



m VA 


Cast Iron Gate. 

(Parnell Johnston.) 

Fig. 39. 

Wrought Iron Gate. 

(Parnell Johnston.) 

Fig. 40. 

I Ca^tlf, Sydney.] 

Bronze Work. 
Fig. 41. 




One specimen is here given (Figure 42) of tlie adaptability of the Waratah 
in Applied Art in the lace industry. Tiu; design is from that able teacher of 
ours, the late Mr. W Johnson, I.ecturer in Decorative Art in the Technical 
College, Sydney. It call-, for no special explanation, except perhaps to state that, 
although its rendering is an extreme of conventionalisation, yet no one familiar 
with the flower will fail to recognise the floral emblem of Australia for over a 
hundred years. Now that there are indications of lace manufacturing being 
established in Australia, it is hoi)ed that similar designs will eventuate from the 
dexterous manipulation of the needle or l)obl)ins of Australian students in the 
making of point, card, and other kinds of lace. 

Fig. 42. 

The opportunity is here taken of drawing the attention of such students 
of the lace classes to the comprehensive collection of old and modern laces which 
is now exhibited in this Museum. 

Students who have not the advantage of travel may thus see originals of 
those fabrics close at hand. 

The idea, however, is not so much to produce copyists, but that, from a 
study of these specimens, a national or Australian design in laces should be the 
result, for, above all things, we must be original. 

The t\'pes shown are too numerous to enumerate here, but such well-known 
names as Flandres, Valenciennes, Mechlin, Brussels, Limerick, and Cluny, 
figure conspicuously amongst the samples. 

Figure 43 is a good example of original conception in Montmellick needle- 
work by Miss S. Docker. 




lo?. \ 


I >i 

> . ' ^ 

> If 



[Portion of Quilt. J 

By Miss DOCKER. 

Fig. 43. 



REPOUSSE. ^'''- ^"- ^'''"■""' '''"""■'^ 

By Miss E. MANN, Technical Art School, Ballarat. Victoria. 
Fig. 46. 




Fig. 44. 

Figure 45 is a plaster venti- 
lator, designed and modelled by 
Mr. George Tame, student, Model- 
ling Class, North Sydney Technical 

Figure 44 shows a swag in 
plaster-of-Paris, with a Waratah 
as the dominant flower. Its appli- 
cation in this selection is at once 
api)arent. It is the work of Mr. 
A. Murray, Teacher of Modelling 
at the Sydney Technical College, 

Fig. 47. 

Fig. 45 


The Waratah has long been a 
favourite with the workers in gold and 
silver, especially the latter, and is tcj be 
found in various forms in almost every 
jeweller's shop in Sydney. Waratah 
l)rooches, buckles (enamel), and ohjets 
lies arts are manufactured, and find a 
ready sale. Figure 47 illustrates the 
silversmith's art in embossed work on a 
silky oak frame, thus forming an Aus- 
tralian combination. 

The other objects here depicted 
need not be detailed or particularised, 
as they only further illustrate how the 
silversmith favours this lloral trophy 
in the works of Irs handicraft 



It is a lavounte lor decoration in foundation-st.uic tr(nvcl>. and several an 
depicted here, i.e :— 

[Hardy Bros., Sydney.] 

The King's Trowel, used in the 
laying of the Foundation Stone 
of the Commonwealth Offices 
in London, 1913. 

Waratah Decoration 
Fig. 48. 






,/ /w./:,;/s, SV(//!0'] 

Lord Denman's Trowel, used in 
laying the Foundation Stone 
at Capital Site, Canberra, 
12th March, 1913. 

Waratah and Wattle 

Hon. Andrew Fisher's Trowel. 
Foundation Stone, Common-wealth 
Bank Sydney, N.S.W., May, 

Waratah and Flannel Flower 

Fig. 49. 

Fig. 50. 


Silver Gilt Buckle (Enameled). 

Fig. 51. 


Silver Gilt Enamel Buckle. 

Fig. 5 2. 


Silver Buckle. 

Fig. 53. 


Design for Wall Paper. 

(Mr. L. HENRY.) 
Fi^. 54» 


Design for Wall Paper. 

New South Wales, Victorian, and Tasmanian Waratahs. 

(C. TOMS.) 

Fi^. 55. 


Waratah design for a Wall Paper. 

Fi^. 56. 


Waratah and Flannel Flower design for a Wall Paper. 

Fig. 57. 




Design for Wall Paper. 

New South Wales, Victorian, and Tasmanian Waratahs. 
C. TOMS.) 
Fig. 58. 


Dado Design. 

(L. HENRY,) 
Fig. 59 


Dado Design. 

(L. HENRY.) 
Fig. 60 






di o 






Wall-paper is a conuiKHlitx- wliidi enters very largely now into the life of a 
civilised conununity, and, like most dcMnestic articles, has its fashions, ideas, 
forms, designs, colouiing, &c., all changing with kaleidoscopic \-ariation of i)assing 

The W'aratah, however, is so constituted that its component parts and 
lea\-es lend tliemseh-es to almost any treatment in Applied Art for this purpose, 
and, in the li.mds ol skillnl draltsmen, are c(tn\-erf ii)le into any design or motive. 

( )i al: hranrhes ol Applied Art wall-paper oinamentations depict botanical 
forms, both from life and wirious coiu'entionalisations, perhaps mcnx' than any 
other branih of the subject. x\t tliis one cannot wonder, for expressions of Nature 
w ill alw ays surpass in Ixauty and design geometrical as well as rococo renderings in 
decoration. We can hardly l)e surprised that a fiower so gorgeous as the Waratah 
should have lieen a favourite in this direction with the late Mr. Henry, U)V it is 
doubtful if any specimen of th ' botanical world permits of such l)old treatment 
in wall-paper decoration. This is illustrated in colour in Figure 54. The blue 
ground brings out the rich colouring of the flowers and l)racts, whilst the green of 
the leaves gives the natural harmonising of these two. It is both beautiful and 

Figure 55 is an original design for a dark paper, further decorated with a 
Waratah conception in gold, by Mr. C. Toms, Museum .\rtist and Lecturer. 

Figure 56 is a design by the late Mr. Parnell Johnson, Lecturer in Applied Art 
at the Sydney Technical College, the stalk or stem and leaf treatment being 
particularly good. 

hlgure 57 is an original design, composed of Waratahs and Flannel Flowers, 
also executed 1)\' Mr. Parnell Johnson. 

In Figure 5(S we have a concepti<;)n introducing tlu' tl(nver-heads and leaves 
of the New South Wales, Mctorian, and Tasmanian Waratahs. 

In this instance, conx'entionalisation in no way obhterates the botanical 
identity of the i)lants. It was also designed by Mr. C. Toms, Museum Artist 
and Lecturer in A})i)lied Art at the Sydney Technical College. 


Xlll.-(a) DADO. 

The original (Figure 59), in colours and gold, is very attractive, and is 
intended for surmounting a dado, or perhaps a frieze. 

The blooms are of a cardinal colour in this case, and geometrically con- 
ventionalised. The spiral or pineapple lines on the top flower can just be traced 
in the figure, but are more pronounced in the original. The conventionalisation 
is not much removed from the natural object, but the result is perfect, and the 
botanical identity assured at once. The leaves are a paler green than obtains 
in Nature, but this is evidently done to harmonise with the cardinal of the bloom, 
which it does with good tffect. 

The leaves, like the lateral blooms, are balanced so as to further geometrise 
the whole idea. The stems are drab. The black band and serrate-edged circle 
are in gold, except that the lighter circle in it is cardinal, thus matching the 
Waratah. The Greek pattern at the base is in green on a bluey-slate ground, 
bordered by th ■ gold band at the top. White is the main ground. 

Xlll.-(b) DADO OR FRIEZE. 

Figure 60 gives a particularly clever study in colour and design. The 
upper field, broad band, and central circle are in gold, and the lower portion in 
black, two colours which bring out in bold relief the brilliant scarlet or vermilion 
of the Waratah blooms, which are in natural pose, giving a high effectiveness, 
so that no conventionalisation is required. The stem leaves are in natural green, 
and shaded, and, like the blooms, outlined in black. The circumference leaves' 
autumn tints harmonise with the gold. The four stars, representing the 
South 'in Cross, are in pure white, the whole producing a masterpiece of mural 
decoration such that no other Australian plant could give or produce. It is one 
of the most beautiful objects that Mr. Henry ever executed, and it seems strange 
in the=e days, when the Wattl? has so many followers, that the Acacias never 
appealed to him, for he has not left a single illustration of the Wattle in Applied 
Art behind him. 


Tn the samples of Decorative Art left us by the late Mr. Parnell Johnson, 
L'.cturer in Industiial Art at the Sydney Technical College, the Waratah figures 
largely — in fact, more so than any other flower — and several of these are now 
reproduced. His frieze (Figure 61) looks particularly well when seen in colour, 
and is designed with much taste and artistic feeling. The ground of the upper 
portion is pale slate, whilst the on a I panel containing the group of three Waratahs 



is just a faint wash of the ])alest nmlral tint, which briiii^^s them out in bold 
rehef. The two leaves of the central flower ar.; a slatey blue, and th: four 
sprcadins^ leaves at the base natural colour. The i^round of the lower i)ortion is 
black the top and bottom borders beini; stone colour, bounded by drab and 
steel grey respecti\-ely -in fact, it is a study in neutral tints, in ohUt to brin-.^ 
out the hii^h rose colour of the W'aratah. 



On.' of the finest renderings of the W'aratah in thi^ ])ranrh of Tcchnit al Art 
is that of Mr. L. Henry in the two large windows in the Sydney Town Ibill. 
One is reproduced here in black and white (Figure Oj) Ixit the true effect of its 

Fig. 63. 



natural colours in such adornment must be seen in silii to bj realised, and so 
these windows alone are well worth a visit of inspection to our noble Town Hall, 
The whole design is a fine conception by the artist, and the frame of the 
central figure (representing Australia) is supported in the lower half on both 
sides by a Warafah in a vase, whilst the two smaller lateral windows are largely 
given over to Waratah decoration. 

Figure 64 is a black-and- 
white leproduction of a leaded 
window in the Technological 
Museum, in wiiich is embodied 
the uKjst representative flowers 
of our busli. In its execution 
the arrangement and selection of 
plants were left entirely to the 
designer, Mr. Hulme, of Sydney. 
He, like all other artists up to 
the present time, when dealing 
with our nati\'e floral decora- 
tion, has given the place of 
honour t(j the Waratah. The 
Wattle, although given a promi- 
nent position, is quite lost in 
this reproduction, nor is it C(jnsp:cu(jus in the original, for the small, fluffy, 
white yellow balls of flowers do not lend themselves to artistic treatment. No 
better instance can be given of the wonderfully gorgeous beauty of the Waratah 
over all others for window decoration. The transmitted light enhances the 
brilliant colouring of this bloom in the group, which includes Christmas 
Bush, Eucalyptus, Native Fuchsia (Epacris), &c., and well illustrates the 
botanical name, Tdopca, for it can indeed l)e identified at a great distance. 

Fig. 64. 


In this section o' technical education the Waratah is the favourite amongst 
students, and in Figures 65 and 66 are seen its application here. 

Figure 65 is a plaque, showing the Waratah in alto-relief, carved on Beech, 
(Gmelina Leichhardtii, F.v.M.) by Mrs. Crimj), of the Wood-carving Class of 
our Sydney Technical College, under the tuition of Miss Bannister, the teacher 
of this subject. 

In Figure 66 a conventionalisation is intri)duced, but the botanical identity 
is very evident. I am indebted to the kindness of Mr. W. A. (iullick, Govern- 
ment Jointer, for tlii-- illustration. 


\'ery many more cxam])los could Ix; given of the utilisation of tlu; Waratali 
in W'oodcarving. One of the tuiest specimens is now on b(jard the Australian 
man-o'-war, " Parramatta." It is here used in the decoration of the box, made 
of Silky Oak, containing the Union Jack, both of which wore presented by the 
ladies residing on the shores of the Parramatta Ri\er. 

Fig- 65. Fig. 66. 

Thus we see, from the many illustrations given, that, after a hundred years 
of occupation of this continent by the Anglo-Saxon race, the plant which, 
above all others, and without the aid of leagues and societies, has characterised 
our world of Applied Art is 


And long may it 
"Be still the glory of this land. 
Happiest •work of finest hand." 

[C. F. Lastron. Photo. 


Fig. 67. 

[By pi-nniisKiii Sydney Daily TiU^idpli] 



^^^ © APPENDIX. 



URELY it was a far-reaching thought that brought the glad breath 
of spring into the very hub of the city — to the very steps of th? 
General Post Office. 

Have you seen the scarcely-c'othed Waratahs coyly hiding by the flower- 
stands? They have but come early to whisper in the spring-time a promise of 
the glory and magnificence th ir younger sisters shall appear in in the near 
summer days to come. Poor half-clothed Waratahs ! But little beauty have 
ye in the hurry of your coming; yet I !ove you. I have been away so long. 
Only once in twelve long years have I seen an Aust alian flower. 1 was last 
year looking in a florist's window in a far country, and there, 'midst masses of 
roses and violets, I saw one single, stately flower that set my heart aching, and 
filled my eyes with scalding tears. 'Twas a great, glorious Waratah. Blindly 
I stumbled into the shop. " Where did you get that Waratah? " I asked. The 
florist answered, in broken English, " It was frozen, and brought from Australia." 
I opened my purse. " How much is it? " " Oh, it is not for sale; 'tis only on 
exhibition. It has brought many jieople to our window, and has sold us many 
flowers." I passed into the cafe beyond. I would hide behind a screen and wipe 
my overbrimming eyes. I was home-sick. " You come from the land of the 
big red flower? " a maid asked curidusly, as she brought me coffee and fruit. 
I nodded. " Is it a good land — the land of the big red flower? " " A good 
land? Oh, a glorious land ! " I said; " and I — I am homesick. The flower has 
made me need my land so badly." I was leaving my untouched dish of fruit 
when the florist came to me — with the Waratah. " Will you please take from 
me the flower of your land that you 'ove so much? " I was bewildered with 
gratitude and joy. How I loved that Waratah ! I have its faded petals yet. 
So you see why I love you, red, hiding harbingers. I have been away long years. 
You seem to me the echo of someone's whisper. One only knows the loveliness 
of our coiuUry who has been away and has come back — home ! 

Look at the native loses there in fulles*: view on the \-ery topmost slicH' ! 
Long years ago I didn't like y(ju much, little native roses. I even begrudged you 
your name. But 1 have been away, and now I know^ your sweet, sweet biauty. 


I think \()ur name i- just the name for you. I luuy niy face in your gay sweet- 
ness, and I know you now as one of the sweetest breatlis of the sweet spring- 

To-day I played with tliose golden halls that only come witli the first bn-atli 
of spring. " Late Wattle," we call it — " la/.y " wattle, that only wakens when 
spring ris 'S gail\' on the damps of winter. Or is it that you linger to mingle your 
fragrant breath with that of the native rose, or to give greetings to the majestic 
W'aratah, and to tlu' many blossoms that herald in Australia's r-pring? 

No, sweet, pink Boronia ! I am not overlooking your beautiful, starry sweet- 
ness. I went to the Post Office one day for a letter from the far-off land where 
I have been, and, standing a moment as I was passing to revel in the sweetness 
of violets, narcissi, and stocks, I saw a bunch of starry, pink Bc^ronia that flooded 
me with remembrances. I was a child again, and my pinafore was full of pink 
wild flowers. Ah, little flower ! You so filled me with my happy childhood that, 
clasping you tightly to my heart, I took you straight back to my home. 'Twas 
manv hours after when I remembered that my letter still lay imclaimed. 

Ah ! wild flowers of Australia — sweet wild flowers of our homeland, 
Australia — how dear you are to those of us who see you but now after long 
years ! What associations, what tender memories you bring back to us ! What 
a sweet, sweet breath of spring you bear to us ! Though at week-ends we may 
ourselves gather you from the beguiling slopes of th.' Blue Mountains — a\'e, from 
above the rocky cliffs of Coogee, from the bushy lands near Manly ;uul Middle 
Harbour, and from the reaches of the rivers at our gates, we delight in seeing 
you in the very midst of our city. We rejoice that thus your silent sweetness 
daily spreads gladness in our hearts. 

\\'ell is it that, on the flower-stands, in pride of place among the choicest 
blossoms from the gardener's choicest patch, we may see and smell our sweet wild 
flowers — Nature's Breath o' Spring. 


(Sydney Morning Herald, Wednesday, August 14, 1912.) 



j^LOWER-LOVERS on every side are expressing regret for the wholesale 
fV destruction of Waratahs recorded last week. Eor some time past 
people in the mountains have been writing of the wonderful crop of 
Waratahs which have covered the bush with their glowing flowers this year. 
Picked in moderation, they would have beautified the district for weeks, and 
it certainly does not seem right or just that a whole countryside should be 
depleted of its beauty in order to decorate one baUroom for a few hours. 

But, sad as it is to rob the bush in this way, the worst of such a wholesale 
gathering is that it will affect the flower crop for several seasons to come. For, 
where thousands of blooms are plucked, it is inevitable that there should be much 
breaking of wood, and the destruction of many young shoots. At the recent 
wild flower show some people expressed disappointment that there was not a 
greater mass of blossoms. But that was just the point on which the committee 
rejoiced, for to have great masses of one flower means a certain amount of damage 
to the species, except in the case of plants which grow in large flower clumps, 
such as wattle. The fact that the exhibits at the flower show had been gathered 
with such care and moderation was, to flower lovers, one of the most pleasing 
and encouraging features of the whole exhibition ; and naturalists hoped that 
it was a s'gn that the general public were beginning to really understand some- 
thing of the treatment of the bush flowers. This matter of the Waratahs has 
lather shattered these hopes, for there can be little doubt the thing was done 
in ignorance of the results, rather than in sheer callousness; and it seems that 
the public in general, and the florists in particular, have still a great deal to learn 
in this direction. There is a certain amount of satisfaction in the knowledge 
that our once-despised native flowers are now considered to grace the highest 
house in the land ; but if such appreciation is going to mean thoughtless waste 
and wholesale destruction, we would rather see the bush blooms ignored by all 
but their true lovers — the naturalists and the poets. 

Svdnev Morniiiii, Herald, November 13, 1912. 



a NEW arn\-al in S\(liic\- from ahroad. jjassing any time during the year 
along the line of llowi'r-stalls in front of the General Post Office, would 
recognise amongst the wealth of blooms exhibited for sale some old 
garden flowers, but during the present and next month would be attracted 
by a large, gorgeous-coloured, unique specimen of the wonderful flora of this 
glorious continent. He would, no doubt, b(> moved at once to ask the name of 
such a remarkable natural tloral lrium[)li. The n'])ly to such question would 
be that it is the Australian Waratah, the floral emblem and glory of the white 
race of Eastern Australia for the last loo years, which, durmg this period, has 
been the national flower of at least one State of the Conunonwealth — i.e., New 
South Wales. A national flower ! \Miat has constituted a national flower, 
and who determined the status of such ? Most probabl\- a plant bect)mes 
so, firstly, on account of its adaptability to design, which appeals to the 
artistic side of a community, and, secondly, owing to some unique attracti\-e 
botanical feature. 

The architectural remains of Egypt of even prehistoric times show us that 
I he Lotus was the national flower of those children of light during the earth's 
dark ages, for we find it adorning the bases and tops of columns, walls, cS:c., 
the morphology of its floral parts lending itself to a conventionalisation that 
may be regarded as the very embodiment of simplicity in decoration. 1 wonder 
who selected the lotus flower, and why? I think I can answer this cpiestion to 
my own satisfaction, but it may not satisf}' the Egyptologist, to whom I must 
leave the correct solution. 

From Egypt to Greece is not a great distance, and what do we find here as 
the best-used flower for decorative purposes? The Honeysuckle, which to-da}' 
can be seen many buildings in Sydney, and this design will be passed 
on and used for all time. Working west, the Roman oft'ers his contribution to 
decoration in the Acanthus leaf, which was so attractively conventionalised that 
to-day it is more used in stone decoration than an}' other adaptation. At our 
Victoria Markets it is profusely used, especialty under the dome facing George- 
street. x\ll these Old- World delineations have lived through the ages down to 
the present day, a fact, no doubt . which would please the original artists could they 
again visit this earth. It is probably a survival of the fittest. The fittest in 
what? The botanical form that was most adaptable to design. 

Now, of all our Austrakan flowe s, which would most fulfil this condition? 
Well, I maki bold to say, if it we e possible to ha\'e cut specimens of all the 
Australian flowers in a hall, and afl the Australian — and, lor that matter, all 
the world's — artists let loose into that room to select the one mo.-t adaptable 


to design, they would by a large majority select the Waratah, just as the 
ancient artists did the Lotus, the Honeysuckle, and the Acanthus. And my 
conclusion is no fanciful one, for I have, I believe, the largest collection of 
photographs illustrating our native ffora in Applied Art, and it is invariably 
noticed that the Waratah is preferred amongst our native flowers. It is 
found in Sydney carved in stone, times out of number, on many of our public 
buildings, in coloured windows, iron and woodwork, friezes, &c. It is on 
regimental badges, postcards, Coats-of-Arms — in fact, during the loo years 
of the colony, it was engrafted into the community as the national flower ; but 
now it would appear that a rival Richmond has entered the held in the Wattle. 

The greatest objection raised against ths Waratah is that the man at Mil- 
parinka has never seen one. Neither does it grow in South Australia or Western 
Austraha ; but here let me say that it is none the less admired there, for, during 
a recent visit to South Australia, I saw it conventionalised in public institutions, 
private houses, &c., as a frieze and wall-paper, and most charming designs they 

Another objection advanced against the Waratah is that it is stiff ; but I 
claim, as a cut flower and for heraldic purposes, it rivals the rose. 

At Melbourne the Waratah figures in decoration, and is more generally 
known and conventionalised in many ways in Victoria than is thought to be the 

However, it seems now established that the Watth is to figure on the 
Australian Coat-of-Arms, which clears the way Tor New South Wales to continue 
on its way with the Waratah as its national emblem, in which selection there is 
no floral rival in the world ; and Walesians can, I am sure, with good grace now 
let the gentle, drooping, unconventionalising Wattle pass for the straight, strong, 
firm Waratah — the glory of our Australian bush. It is Australia's own, and the 
envy of other nations as a national eml)lem. At the recent sale of pictures of 
Australian flowers, in which both Wattle and Waratah figures, the latter sold 
almost as soon as the sale opened. 

As an individual, I think Australia has lei: a grand opportunity pass of 
a((|uiring an heraldic flower of unsurpassed merii: for this special purpose alone — 
a flower that in its generic name, seen from afar, expresses the hope of all Austra- 
lians that the glories of this continent shall be a light to the rest of the world. 

K. T. B. 

Sydney Morning Herald, September 24, 1910. 






HAT constitutes a national tlower? Various reasons have been 

ach'anced l>y the different advocates for a particuhir flower for this 

special pur})ose, and, as human nature is so constituted, there will 

always be a variance in opinions, and a unanimity ot ideas is perhaps too much 

to expect. 

The ancient Greeks, As^yrians, Egyptians, &c., probably had their battles 
over this subject, and even England had its Wars of the Roses. The Scotchman 
got ovei his differences of opinion by adapting the Thistle for his Coat-of-Arms, 
and wearing the Heather in his coat on his national lioliday — -Xew Year's Day. 
This divided choice is a good one, for in both cases each serves its own particular 
purpose admirably. The Heather is a most unsuitable flower for heraldry, and 
would be lost on armorial bearings, for it has nothing distinctive enough for 
conventionalisation, and its identity w(juld be lost in any form of Decorative Art. 
The Thistle as a national emblem is all right, and fulfils in every way the require- 
ments of a national flower, according to the American standard, as shown by his 
desiderata below. 

However, the fact remains that for all the time since the foundation of the 
colony — over loo years — with a free hand for students of Art to select from the 
native flora a plant, one that lent itself for more decorative treatment than any 
other, the consensus of choice fell upon the \\'aratah, and one sees this embodied 
in times out oi number in all directions. 

It was the lovers and workers in Ancient Art that chose the Lotus, Acanthus, 
&c., and if they had had so lovely a specimen of Nature as the Waratah. what 
would they not have done with it in the Art productions to give it a national 
character? The expression, "the land of the Waratah," applies to Australia, 
and no other ; it is Australia's very own. 

In the Wattle, Australia has not a monoj^oly like the Waratah, for Africa 
has over one hundred native wattles, and it also occurs in America, East and 
West Indies, and the Islands. 

Then, again, it is not too much to say tliat throughout tlie wiiole botanical 
world the Waratah is probably unsurpassed as a flower for decorative purposes, 
and it is impossible to so conventionalise it out of recognition— a great feature 
in a national flower. 


The Americans are now deciding on a national flower, and it has been 
resolved " that a plant to serve properly the purposes of a national flower should 

1. A native of the United States of America. 

2. Should grow wild over the greater part of its area. 

3. Should bloom on one or more of our national lK)lidays. 

4. Should be capable of easy cultivation in any garden. 

5. Should not be a weed, or 

6. In any way offensive or harmful to health. 

7. Should bear what in the popular sense is called a flower. 

8. Should not be mei"ely a foliage plant, or one chiefly valued for its 

g. Should lend itself readily to floral decoration by variety and purity of 

colour and distinctiveness of form, and 
10. The features characteristic of its form should combine such simplicity 
and gracefulness that, when used conventionally in decorative design, 
the flower may be readily recognised, independently of its colour. 

{Bosfo?i Daily Globe, Jan. 14, I911.) 

In the above desiderata it will be seen that the Waratah far outclasses any 
other Australian flower, and, to be candid, I advocate the use of the Waratah 
is our national flower. 



-^f^HE South Australian " Wattleites " — /.<., tliose who beheve that tht' 
\^ wattle blossom ought to be the Australian national floral tmblem, are 
indignant because somebody has told them that South Africa has com- 
mandeered the yellow flower, and proposes to use it for patriotic purposes. 
But is the Wattle accepted by the people as the national Australian emblem ? 
The truth is that the Waratah has a strong following, and it is likely that, 
if it had a wider range in Australia, it would be easily first as the national 
flower. The great beauty (jf the Wattle is admitted, but a flower to be used 
as an emblem requires other quahties. Take the Thistle of Scotland, for 
instance. It is not only a thing of beauty, but an expression of opinion. 
It stands up straightly, strongly, and defiantly, armed against attack. Now, 
what Australia needs is an emblem which shall combine both strength and 
beauty, and those are qualities which the Waratah possesses to a remarkable 
extent. Its colouring is pronounced, so that it can be used very suitably on 
flags, or wherever the national symbols are displayed in colour. Its ruddi- 
ness suggests health and strength; its texture suggests firmness and endunmce; 
its strong, upright stalk symbolises independence. Taken altogether, it 
has just the characteristics of a national flower, and ought to win pride of place 
over even the lovely Wattle. There ought to be a Waratah League to push its 
claims, especially in those benigned places in the Commonwealth where it doe- 
hot grow in its wild state. 

Evening News, May 17, 191 1. 

Australian Waratah Legends. 

( 1 ) THE WAR- AT AH. By L. Henry. 





N.S.W. Waratah Legend. 


/^r ONG, long, long time aj,'o . . . so long that, as my father used to say. if we were 
•Jl to try to count tlie eyes which sliine above us on a summer night and think that 
each one of tlieni meant r.ine moons, horn . . . and disappeared again forever, 
we shouhl still have no idea of the time which has gone by since that happened which I 
am going to teU. 

Long, long ago, God and his wife begat a son, destined to have allotted to him in 
due time a portion of the universe to rule under his father's sway. 

The child, who was named War, on account of his beauty and strength, grew rapidly; 
though the last born, he was the brightest star of all the family, th" pride and delight of his 
mother Kari, and the wonder and admiration of all; but hi-. I.ithir Tiniu. who was old, 
so old as almost to have forgotten what youth is, \va:- stern and moody with hiui, because 
he was full of passion, life, and frolic. 

As soon as he was able to escape his mother's care, he began to roam about to all 
the corners of heaven, rioting, revelling, scandalising all, l)oth old antl young, but always 
forgiven, his wild conduct now submitted to on account of his youth, now for the sake of 
his father, and always winning his way by his bright smile and irresistible charms. He 
was, in truth, a wild youth, full of tricks, ready to follow madly any fancy of his mind, any 
inexplicable whim of his powerful being, and whenever TimiU heard of sor:ie new freak of 
his, which happened almost daily, he would look askance at him. and remain thoughtftd 
and moody for the rest of the day, till at last the presence of the youth became unbearable 
to him, and was a ceaseless cause of quarrel between him and his wife. 

■' Kari," said he to her, " thy son is a fine fellow — very fine." 

" Do I not know it;" answered the mother, " the finest of all the himilv. anrl, please 
your Worship, some of them would be incomparable were it not for his dazzling beauty 
which outshines them all. Quite right, my Lord, he is very fine." 

" AlmLOst too fine," quoth the father, " the wildest scamp, the most unruly madca]) 
a mother of thy rank might win." 

" What dost thou mean, my Lord? I do not understand thei*." 

" Dost thou not? J fear that thou understandest me but too well ... I never 
thought to be disgraced to such an extent. Hast thou not eyes to see? Art thou .-:o destitute 
of understanding as not to realise that that fine son of thine is un\\orthy of his father? Say, 
does he take after me ; does he not spend his life from morn to night, and from dark to dawn, 
revelling in the most unjustifiable of conduct. \\"hen everyone has retired to rest he steals 
softly away, leaving us to sleep, and goes, no one knows where, to cause disturbance; 
amongst my peaceable subjects, who bear with his follies out of consideration of me. 
During the day it is the same thing over again, as soon as everyone has gone to his laljours ; 
he only waits for thee to have in high fallutin on thy cloud chariot to visit our empire, 
or I know not where, hidden in the midst of that feathery couch, and drawn by those black 
birds I gave thee when I young. Ah, yes ! I was young then, and proud to see thee 
travelling through space like a whirlwind, thy black diamond-e^-ed birds springing from 
star to star, their legs as strong as my will, balancing on their wings darker than the void 
of night, peeping their proudly crested heads aljove the mist of clouds, showing at times 
their necks covered with pearls of all the shades of azure, all the corals of the ocean. Yes, 
and they can do no wrong, those birds of thine ; thou wilt have no word said against 
them, and never could I obtain any redress even when one of the brutes plucked out the eyes 
of my kangaroos ; they are always right ; it was done in self-defence ; they were quite 


harmless, so gentle, so . . . Yes, they carry thee everywhere at thy leisure, whilst I 
have always had to ride my kanj^aroos, and now that I am too old for that have to walk 
as best I may wherever I require to go. Ah ! one aiways learns something in growing old. 
I do if women do not ; and nothing angers me so much as to see thy foolish conduct in 
thine old age; thy ridiculous behaviour with that son of thine, who, notwithstanding all 
thou mayest say, as soon as thou hast gone one way starts off in another and is not to be 
seen all day long until just before thou comest back, which is usually late, very late, often 
at untimely hours. Silence, my Dame ! Silence ! I know what I am saying. I know 
when the wife deserts her home the husband is angered and the children go . . . where 
they should not. So it has always been, so it is in thy rase, and so it will be forever 
I have said . . . Go ! " 

The poor mother went, and wept, and was disconsolate at having l)een so rebuked 
by her I.ord. " Alas ! Alas !" did she cry. " Woe on me ! What have I done? How 
have I lost the reverence of my Lord? Is it a crime to love that sweet last son of mine, 
who was given to me in my old age, the dear beloved? The beauteous youth ! Oh ! Woe 
on me! Woe forever!" And she cried and cried, and when her anguish gave her a 
minute's respite she thought to herself that perhaps in her everyday course from one end 
of heaven to the other she had failed to meet with some of those who had suffered from 
the wild pranks of her son, and that her I.ord has been complained to by beings who, 
having long lived in the calm, customary, well-regulated, and time-honoured routine of 
eternity, could not understand the outbursts of her robust young son, and who, being so 
very old themselves, had. like Timu, forgotten long ago the time which everyone has to go 
through, and which, if noisy, peradventure somewhat riotous and disorderly, is nevertheless 
the time for one day of which auyone would barter the whole of eternity. " What shall 
I do?" cried Kari, " I dare not now alfront the anger of my I ord. It would only provoke 
him the more. I must set off at once and travel day and night in order that no fresh 
complaint be made, because I am sure that some bad report by an evil tongue is the true 
cause of my beloved child's disgrace and my own. My son ! Oh, where art thou? Come 
to me, darling. Thy mother knows now the taste of tears." 

She was just lamenting thus when she was startled by a tremendous clash, accom- 
panied l)y the awful bellowing of anger, and heard her son, mad with passion, fighting, and 
shouting on this wise : " Off ! Stand ofl ! Ofl with you, wretch !" —and rushing upon him 
headlong were giants of hery countenance, whom War fought, and sent at a Ijlow rolling into 
the infinitude of darkness. 

At the first sight she was terrified, trembling for the safety of her son; but iu a 
moment her fears had disappeared and her face brightened with the carnadine hue of pride 
and joy, and as soon as the last blow had Hung far away into space the last of the giants, 
she approached her son, and embi-aced him, though she had not strength at first to utter 
a word. How happv was that embrace, how sweet ! She would surely have fainted in 
the arms of the beloved but she had to rally all her motherly courage ; she wanted to know 
if he had not been hurt, and then what was the cause of the quarrel, how it came about, 
and what consequences would be likely to follow, antl she heard all about it in the 
following terse answer • — 

"Hurt? No fear of that; I cannot be hurt, mother. The cause? A pretty little 
star who loved me, and whom I loved dearly. How it canie about? Well . . . the 
father, one of the ministers of Timu, objected, and told me so in such lauguage that I, in 
turn, objected to it. I took the star and carried her far away, and while coming back, on 
my way to thee, I was attacked by her father and his followers, and thou hast just seen 
what I have done with the last of them." 

" But dost thou not think that thy father will be angered when he liears about it?" 

The son thought for a moment .... 

" Well, mother. Well I do not know. What i> there to be done?" 


i hey pondered silently lor a while, tlien Kan looked round ami suddenly exclaimed, 
" Aroci ! Arooi ! " and in an instant the birds who had been roosting close l)y in the shadow 
of the clouds flapped their wings, and, their bright eyes wide open, they were at once ready 
and waiting upon her. 

" My son," said the mother, " go home and wait for nu-." 

" Mother, where art thou going ? " 

" (;o home, my Ijcloved child, l)e gentle with thy lather, whatever may come to pass. 
He is thy father, renuMiilier it ; do not (pianel with him, do not forget thyself. Wait for me. 
I shall not be long." 

"But where art thou going, Mother? I'l'll me?" 

" Poor child ! " answered the mother . ..." 1 am going .... \o. 
I will not tell thee now. (io home .... I »<) not grieve," and she took him in her arms 
and kissed him with all the might of her in art. 

" I'll not be long," said she, stealing away. 

"Mother! Mother!" 

She looked back without stopping, and said : 

" Hush ! Not a word ! " and so she left him, murmuring to herself, " .Men give blows, 
women soothe them, woman is born to heal wounds." 

As she stepped on to her couch of clouds, she looked back once more and, seeing her 
son motionless and depressed, looking after lur, she said to herself, " Poor child I 1 must 
not let him see that I am sad," and turned her head in the oj^posite direction, but .ifter an 
instant she could not resist taking one last look to see if he had moved or il lie were still 
in the same position, a tear came to the brim of her eyelids, she felt a swift tlirill jiass over 
her warm cheeks, and between her treml)lins Iii)s expired these words, . . . " .My Ijabe ! 
My son ! " 

When Kari had left his presence, Timu sat solemn and siknt whilst the clouds of anger 
cleared gradually from his brow; the excitement being over, he was ])robal)ly thinking about 
what had taken place, and looked somewhat uneasy, he got up and walked about slowly, 
his hands behind his back, now with his head bent forward on his chest and his vacant eyes 
riveted on some imaginary object of interest at his feet, now witli his licnd erect and eyes 
lost in the dxity of distraction, .\fter a while he stopped and took suddenly an attitude of 
determination, saying aloud, " It is well done ! She deserved it ! .Vuthority must I)e main- 
tained. I am master, and everything is well. 1 feel myself again. Authority ! Strength ! 
Will ! Fine attributes ! I wonder that I haw so long allowed this nonsense to go on. Is 
it not my duty to stop what I do not approve ? Am I to be made a laughing stock because; 
Kari, in growing old, has become foolish? It is what always befalls the husband who allows 
his wife to follow her own will." 

After this monologue he felt not only relieved i)ut satisfied and j)leased witli iiimself, 
and w'ould perhaps have remained so for all eternity had it not Ijei-n that the old Ivarooja, 
the nurse of all his children, presently came into his presence and was the cause of a diversion 
in the train of his thoughts. 

" \\'elcome, Karooja," said Timu. " Wliat hast thou to ask of me? " Thou knowest 
that in acknowledgment of thy faithful and devoted services I have nothing to refuse thee. 
What is the object of thy request? " 

" I thank thee, my Lord, with all the strength of my heart, but 1 fear that thou could'st 
not grant a poor old servant — ■ — ■ • ." 

" What ! What dost thou mean? Do not think that my exalted power can make me 
forgetful. Hast thou not been the second mother of my children ; hast thou not reared all 
of them but the last one, and I would that thou hadst had his training also, he would then have 
been taught to conduct himself in a manner worthy of me . . . Is not his wild behaviour 
a proof of the merit thou hast had in bringing up the others? They all came from thy hands, 
the pride and glory of their father, and I bless thee for it. A woman such as thou is a 


member of the family, and woe to him who treats her as an inferior being. Had War been 
under thy care I should not now be ashamed of him, of her, of myself .... but 
proceed and do not fear to find thy demand too great for my generosity." 

" Thou art a God ! Only a beneficent God could pour through all my being such a 
refreshing breath of gratitude. Thou hast emboldened me to speak ; deign now to permit 
me to speak freely; do not interrupt me until I shall have done, and then .... dis- 
pose of me in the light of thy wisdom." 

" Granted," said Timu, a slight smile, nearly invisible, running through the white 
forest of his beard. " Begin when thou wilt; thou art the wisest of all the women I have 
ever known. By myself, thou art the first to ask for permission to speak; I have never 
heard of any other who diil so. "I listen ..." and so saying he laid himself down 
comfortably on a couch of clouds which was close by. 

Having refused to sit down in the presence of her Lord, Karooja, standing erect in her 
old age, against the deep blue of infinitude, thus began : 

" I overheard what took place between God Timu and his wife Kari." Timu felt some- 
what uncomfortable at such a beginning, and though he tried to wipe oft the blow by muttering 
to himself. " QUI and young, all women enjoy that pastime," his face lost some of the 
benevolence which it had shown before Karooja had begun. " Yes," continued the old nurse, 
" It was the iate of my heart to l)e broken, woman's heart must be broken once, and I had 
been too happy all my life long. The brave and heroic Timu, the God whose power has 
vanquished all the other Gods of heaven, has forgotten that Justice and Truth, more even 
than his valour, gave him the empire of the universe which he has so long enjoyed undis- 
turbed owing to the affection and gratitude of his subjects. The time has come for Timu 
to repent. Timu has been unjust, and injustice is of all sins the one which cannot be atoned 
for. The bright sidereal world will refuse to be led by blindness. One who cannot rule him- 
self is unworthy of ruling others. One who, having lived for innumerable ages in the bosom 
of sweetness itself, and drunk of the inexhaustible love of Kari the bounteous, casts her off 
in a tit of ill-temper, one who m his old age has the ble.ssing of seeing his last-born son bursting 
like a flower in a magnihcent lusli of life, and who dislikes him for his generous, powerful, 
irresistible force, that one is (loomed, his days are numbered, anger and revolt are useless. 
Time, the father of all the Gods of the past, the present, and the future, has willed it so ; his 
fixed decrees cannot be altered to please any God, however great and old he maybe; it would 
stop the oscillation of the whole universe. Ripmt, Timu, recall the loving Kari, who only 
left thee to prevent thy quiet from being disturbed by hearing about the wild doings of thy 
son, doings which thou not only disapprovest, Init condemnest as unpardonable crimes, whereas 
they are only the f)utbursts of youth, the heralds of a career which will be brighter than that 
of any of his forefathers. God Timu, cease to hate that glorious son of thine : he is too strong 
not to be kind ; lie came out of Kari's bosom ami could not be irreverent towards his father. 
God Timu, let thine old age be blessed and protected by War the Radiant, as he is called by 
the countless legions who blush when he looks at tjiem, and are jiregnant with love when they 
see him shaking his mane of white ffre at the impenetrable regions of the dark, and thus 
prepare for thy sweet and devoted Kari, that paragon of fecund mothers, the companion of 
thy fight, the partner of thy glory, the one who has given thee a multitude of rulers for thine 
immeasurable ein]nre ; prepare for her and for thyself a couch of repose from which thou 
inayest witness, while passing slowly away, the glorious deeds of War the Radiant. I see 
in thy looks and liy liiy gestures tiiat thou hast had to summon all thy Godly powers in order 
to keep silence according to thy promise. I am now at thy mercy. Old as I am, I hope for 
nothing better than to disappear and have my being blown into another mould ; I do not ask 
for mercy; whatever may be thy will T am resigned ; I have rendiM-ed to thee the last of my 

" I last thou done? " grumbled Timu between his teeth, his eyes pale with anger, and 
his limbs trcml)ling like the leaves of a cocoa-nut tree when the shaft ha.s received a shock, 
1 havx'," said Karooja. 


'■ Hast thou.'' " brcathrd 1 iiiui m almost inaudible tones; then gathermg the whole 
ot his strength he shouted, shutting his eyes and clenchmg his fists, "Out, out of my sight, 
thou reckless fool ! " and poor Karooja, her head bent and her arms hanging, went slowly 
away whilst the first tears she had ever shed dropped and fell diamond-like on her wrinkled 


The stars were almost hidden by a vi'il of minuti', shapeless clouds, everywhere was grey 
and indistinct, shrouded in a pall of mist; hi-re and there, in every direction, might be seen 
undefined forms floating in the air, peeping out .... then disappearing again, all 
seeming to drift towards the abode of Timu. 

Awful and frowning he sat, with his heatl resting on his right hand, his elbow on his knee, 
whilst his left arm hung at his side and his hand seemed with its long nails to claw the bloom 
of the clouds on which he was seated. The stillness which surrounded him was frightful, 
not a breath of air, not a sound to break the gloom, except the faint cracking of his joints 
and the barely audilile beating of his heart, scarcely enough light to show the white of his 
beard and the grey look of his withered eye. " Woe ! Woe ! " did he mutter. " Woe ! 
Woe ! " . . . . Poor old Karooja ! Poor me ! . . . . Old age ! Decrepitude ! 
Ending .... Karooja ! Karooja ! Woe on the forever — to the end of the endless 
ages ! ^Malediction on all ! .... then bringing his clenched fists on to his knees 
he sat erect and defiant. " No, it shall not be ! " said he, shaking his head " Rather would 
I destroy everything and start afresh for the conquest of the universe. Never ! Never ! 
As though I had been born to die and my omnipotence were but a dream. I shall soon show 
its reality. By my will, I shall ! " and so saying he stood up and was going to shake his 
limbs, when he saw around him, crouching in the clouds, the forms of his attendants who 
had been laid low by the breath of his wrath as the bush of the heath under the breath of the 

" Get up, all of you, get up ! " did he grumble, resuming his seat. " What news? What 
do I read on your dismal faces? Speak out!" 

" I cannot, for fear of offending Timu," said out- old man grovelling on the earth, 
without raising his head. 

" What ! Thou my eldest son, thou darest to disobey me? Speak, spea^k out ! " 

" Thy youngest son, my own l)rother, it grieves me to speak against him." 

" What has he done now? 

" He has revolted, he has dared to raise his arm against all the heavenly powers as 
regulated by thy wisdom, and we are come here to implore thy protection agauist him. 
If he be not repressed at once, all that is will be overthrown, and disorder and riot will 
reign supreme from one end of thine empire to the other." 

" The rebel ! I knew I was right ! " muttered Tinau to himself. " l^roceed Mawarra," 
said he to his son. " Explain thyself, or rather stay. Do not— do not open thy mouth. 
I am Timu the Just, and I want to hear other reports than it be not thought that the slightest 
prejudice has anything to do with my decrees. Who art thou? " continued he, addressing 
the youngest among the host. " What dost thou know of the Ijehaviour of War? " 

" I am the son of Poura, one of thy followers, and I have been blessed with the under- 
standing which is despised by War. I have been brought up to listen to the advice of the 
aged and to submit to their wisdom. I have sometimes been tempted to disobey, but I have 
never done so; I have always remembered in time that my duty forbade that I should go 
out of the limits fixed by the elders. Why has not War done the same ? Instead of breaking 
off from all that is respectable and holy, of running riot, and being a living scandal, a lament- 
able shame to his father and mother, and a scourge to all the inhabitants of thy dominions, 



"Thy speech is worthy of a God," quoth Tiniu, and turning towards his attendants 
he said to them, " Let War be informed that I want him at once. As for you, my faithful 
followers, remember that I am the principle of Justice. I shall judge in a calm and equitable 
manner, and punish with all the energy of my weighty power . . ." 

" By the light of the stars all the birds are grey," so were the shapes of his followers 
gathered round the throne of Timu, and instead of an assembly of Powers surrounding 
their God, they might in the twilight have been taken for a crowd of conspirators, the voices 
raised finding no echo, and their actual vibration being, as it were, deadened l)y the mist 
in wdiich they were dragging out their existence. 

Suddenly, a thrill, which rushed like a flash of lightning through all present, announced 
the approach of War, and as he entered the circle, aspects and countenances assumed another 

After having taken in at a glance the whole of the assembly, in which young and old 
seemed alike yellow with jealousy and troubled under his radiant gaze, he instantly directed 
his steps towards his father, and bending respectfully asked him his pleasure. 

" My pleasure," said Timu, " is that thou shouldest give a public account of thy conduct, 
and apologise to those powers that be, which have been scandalised, insulted, even endangered 
by thy criminal doings. Tremble and prostrate thyself in repentance and await, not only 
my reproof, but the chastisement which must be proportionate, not alone to the offence, but 
to the rank of the offender ; it becomes the great, it is an inviolable duty for those placed by 
birth in exalted positions to show their respect and submission to the established laws and 
powers which have l)een from time immemorial the objects of veneration and awe. Whoso- 
ever fails to obey, maintain, and help to carry out the time-honoured orders established by 
me, it were better for that one that he had never been born to the light of my bounties." 

" My father ! Reverend Timu ! God ! I cannot understand thine anger, my most 
cherished dream is never to have done anything derogatory to my birth, never to have 
committed any act which might expose me to thy reproof, the cruellest and most terrible 
misfortune which could befall a son." 

" War cowers," whispered Poura to the young Paouri, and the lireath of a sneer ran 
through all the crowd. 

War heard it. He felt it from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head, and a slight 
flush appeared on his forehead, but with his eyes intently fixed on his okl father he remained 
motionless, waiting in all humility. 

Emboldened by his humble attitude, all the courtiers and followers of Timu from the 
first to the last, all his brethren from the eldest to the youngest, gave vent to a storm of 
sarcasms, insults, and accusations, embodying all the concentrated venom which might be 
found in the scarlet gums of all the snakes of the creation. At last they had the bt'st of War. 
His own father was sitting in judgment on him, and they were going, if not to hear the last 
of him, at least to see him crushed in such a way that it would be impossible for him to again 
disturb their quiet, to interfere in any way with eternal order, the administration of which 
would be granted to them for ever. 

Under the shock of this volley of insults, War showetl not the slightest sign of emotion, 
still looking fixedly at his father he stood the attack as a God, and waited till the gibes and 
sneers had subsided, Timu having made a sign that he wished to speak. 

" Hast thou heard thine accusers? " quoth Timu in a solemn tone. " W'hat hast thou 
to answer? Speak ! " 

" My father," answered War gravely, " thou art God, and I am thy son, thine obedient 
son and humble one. If I have sinned against thee, if I have forgotten my birth and the duties 
I have to fulfil, 1 am answerable to thee, to thee alone, my Father and my God." 

" Thou didst not answer, War, and I fear that thou hast set thy hceirt to resist my will." 

" Father, never has such thought entered my mind, but rather than degrade my 
nature and stoop to answer those wild beasts 1 would c Jioose never to have l)een. Ask of 


nie anything whicli becomes thy son and I shall instantly obey, but I cannot comply with 
thy wish that I shoukl answer that crowd of gluttony, hypocrisy, and cant, by anything 
than disdain. If thou lovcst better than thou lovest me, poisonous calumny, the cowardly 
snake, which has fed on thy bounties only to sting thy heart ; if, to the youngest son of thine 
old age, thou preferrest these despicable beings who have never lived, never done anything, 
and who shall pass into nothingness, say it', and condemn me without more ado. I shall not, 
I will not, dishonour myself by answering them, and were it not for thy venerable presence, 
I would instead, have swept the whole of them into that obscurity out of which it was a mis- 
take to take them, and into which the sooner they shall be thrown back the better for the 
eternal order over which God Timu presides. 

" In what strain dost thou speak? Dost thou dare," saitl Timu, " to criticise what Ls, 
what I have willed and ordered to be? Thou spcakest of old age, of mistakes, of what I know 
not. Ah ! I see clearly that all that has been said is true — to criticise, to reject, tj revolt; 
it is but a step from the one to the other. War, if I were not a God I should go mad — 
mad — mad enough to be unjust ! What right hast thou to speak as thou dost? Tell me, what 
art thou? " 


" What? From whence dost thou come? Who caused thee to be? " 

" Life." 

"What dost thou mean? " said Timu perplexed. 

" To live." 

"He is mad, impious, sacrilegious, infamous, criminal," roared and shouted thousands 
of voices. 

" Mad ! Mad ! " exclaimed Timu, " Xo ! Xo ! he plays witii my majesty. Silence ! " 
and he added " X^ow answer me, War, and do not believe init thai thou will be brought to 
bay. What dost thou mean by ' Life, Life '" ? 

" I mean to feel." 

" What? " 

" To have sensations." 

" What? Speak or else " 

" I do speak, to have sensations." 

" Again? " 

" The eye which gazes and knows rapture, the smell which dreams, the taste which 
delights, the watchful ear which is enchanted, the touch which takes possession, and Love, 
which two Gods in one kiss and gives an eternal youth to the whole of the universe." 

On hearing this the whole of the assembly lost the control of reason, and a terrific yell 
responded to the last words, whilst Timu, overpowered by rage and emotion, remained 
motionless save that his head and all his limbs shook with frenzy. 

Helplessly clamouring in their impotence, maddened, exasperated, his followers filled 
the air with such a volume of indescribable imprecations and vociferations that it resembled 
the thundering voice of the storm, and from out of the midst of it came, intermingled and 
confused, such words as — blasphemy, revolt, defiance, sensualism, materialism, desecration, 
imposture, rebellion, and damnation. 

Timu arose in the midst of it all. awful and terrilile looking in the storm of his anger, 
shaking his white beard and with threatening brow ; he extended his powerful arm, showing 
all the nerves and sinews of his race, and a shudder ran through all those around him, even 
the stars ceased to wink, and a leaden silence enveloped and weighed upon all. Such a 
calm and depression as always precede the most terrific storms suspended now the furious 
outburst of indignation which had failed to shake War or to disturb his majestic calm. 

" Knave ! Madman ! Fool ! Lowest, most pitiable and degraded being ! Son who hast 
dishonoured me ! Hast thou lost all conscience? Hast thou no fear? " and the voice of Timu 
terrible and awful, roaring and clapping as if all the thunders of the universe had been 
gathered in his breast and had broken forth in one tremendous outburst. 


" I fear nothing," answered War, " bnt the displeasure of my father." 

" Liar ! " exclaimed Timu. " Liar ! How dost thou dare to tell me this? 

" I am not a liar ! Father, I hold thee in all veneration ! " 

" Liar ! " retorted Timu, and a thousand voices repeated " Liar ! Liar ! " 

" By all that is sacred to me; by the mother who carried me in her womb and gave 
me her sweet milk — by God my father, the valiant Timu, whose voice was once heard to 
the farthest corners of the deep — by them 1 declare that I have never lied." 

" Oh, sacrilegious son ! I would that thou hadst never been born ! That the milk of 
Kari had never reared such a rebel ! I know not what prevents me from annihilating thee, 
or delivering thee to my faithtful followers who would soon do justice to thine arrogance and 
thy villainy." 

A wave of joy thrilled the assembly, and at a sign from Timu they would all, young and 
old, have thrown themselves on War, who, terrible in his earnestness, was standing erect, 
ready for the worst. 

" God Timu, by the oath which I have just proffered, I stand. Destroy me if thou canst. 
Annihilate me if it be thy power. If thine omnipotence allows it, decree that I have never 
been .... If thou canst not do these things, if it be impossible for thee to perform 
them, then . . . ." and a minute of deep silence followed . . . . " Then 
come and raise thine hand against thy son, degrade him, strike him, punish him to thme 
heart's content, now, to-day, to-morrow, and for all eternity. Thy son. War, is ready to 
submit to anything from his father, the author of his birth, the channel through which 
his life ran, the centre from which he was thrown into being, and who must be revered by 
all, without hesitation, murmur, or revolt, except when the eternal law of Justice, greater 
and more sacred than all the Gods and all the universe is being outraged and one is madly 
condemned to become an accomplice of an outrage. Oh ! my Father, do what pleases thee, 
and may it calm and alleviate thy anger. Do it. I am thy son. I submit . . . But . . 
if any of those shadowy semblances of beings, who do not deserve a name because they are 
not, incomplete manifestation of what might be, existing only by flattery and on sufferance, 
miserable organisms who have never felt the thrill of life, representing two powers which 
united are irresistible but divided cease to exist, subdividing life into thinking and acting, 
willing and performing, dieaming and realising, as separable functions, whereas they cannot 
be set apart without destroying all harmony and creating despicable races whose sons are 
still worse than their parents, and range under the two heads of tyrants and slaves, who, 
owing to the turn of the wheel of life at times, change places, but always represent the 
division of one force which must be <'«(■ in order to be at all .... If any, or all of them 
dare to lay their degraded hands on me, I shall use against their contamination the right 
of self-defence, and destroy even to the last of them." 

" Dost thou brave me? " roared Timu. 

" I am thy son, the son of a brave father, and I never will submit to any degradation. 
I live, I am, I shall be, and in time I shall pass away and return into the bosom of eternal 
life. Oh ! my father, let not thine old age be deceived; let not those traitorous followers 
of thine take advantage of the youth of thy son and the age of his sire ; do not lend thine ear 
to their calumny ; their conspiring is caused by their baseness, incited by envy, and embittered 
by the fear that one day, and that not a far off one, they will all have to be swept into 

Timu furious, deaf and lilinti with rage, rushed on his son and struek him with all liis 
might, but War did not move; blow followed blow, Imt ^till lie stood, erect, courageous, 

Timu continued to strike until he fi'lt tlial lie must soon cease from sheer want of power. 
He then gathered all his force, gave one last blow, and fell exhausted, whilst War, pale and 
sorrowful, bent to help him. 


" Away ! Away ! " exclaimed Tiinu, loaiuiiig with ragu. " If thou wilt show the truth 
of thy boast of obedience, go to the brink of yon cloud, precipitate thyself into the darkness 
of inUnitude, and disappear nevxT to be heard of more, (lo ! " 

" Father ! Oh my I'atliL-r, let me but wait the return of my mother tliat 1 may receive 
her last embrace." 

" Go ! (io ! " shouted Timu, " tlum slialt meet lier where thou goest." 

War looked at him, and tw(j tt'ars of pure wliite lire rose to his eyes, butseeing his father's 
arm still pointcil firmly in tiie direction of the cloud he went towards it. He looked back 
once, but hearing his fatlier voice's saying " Go ! Curse on thee ! Go ! " bent he his head 
and full of despair he dived into the depth of the abyss, where his track, markefl i^y a line of 
light was gazed on with satisfaction by the followers of Timu. 


Twirl ! Whirl ! Go ! . . blindfolded with sorrow, heedless, hopeless, mad, 
now twisting his powerful life into distorted spiral of the abyss, now sounding straight as a 
beam of light all the recess of intinitude and throwing the semen of life and activit\' where 
before there had only been slumber. 

Leaping, bomiding, rushing, at such a tremendous rate llial his course left behind it 
in the darkness a line of hre coiling and recoiling on itself, twisting in almost indescribable 
parabolas, clashing, in his wild tiight against the celestial spheres, crushing or carrying in 
his train all the sidereal bodies who were waiting for his passage in the dreary solitude of the 
dark, on . . . on . . . " Mother ! Mother ! " cried lie with a voice at the sound 
of which an awful shudder was felt by everything which is. " Mother ! Mother ! Where art 
thou? " but millions of echoes were the only answer to his lormidable roar. 

Suffering without hope, fall without redemption, wound whicli cannot be soothed, 
past which cannot be lived again, inexorable destmy which cannot erase the past, "Mother! 
Mother ! " did he shriek, pulling out handfuls of his burning hau" and throwing it behind 
him, tearing the flesh of his breast and opening it like a bleeding fruit ..." Mother ! 
jMother ! I would give my life not to have caused thee any suffering. What has become of 
thee? In what solitude does thy pale old age drag out its sorrow and the loneliness of its 
al:)andonment? Malediction, woe, despair ! . . . " and he pursued his headlong course, 
frantic, terrible, blind, rolling madly at the head of myriads of asters which, attracted by his 
glory, were following in his train ; breaking through every obstacle, on . . . on . . . 
upwards, downwards, in every direction, as an eagle in the air, an emu on the plains, a fish 
in the ocean, the lightning in the clouds, meditations m the mind . . . tearing, striking, 
destroying ... on ... on .. . when all of a siuUkn he saw before him 
the sweet image of Atah, who alone stood in his path and waited to be crushed by him. 
He stopped, and Atah went up to him. " I heard thy despair, War, and I have come to thee. 
I have come to thee," she repeated; but War, pensive, did not utter a word. " 1 know," 
said she " I know thou thinkest of her, but hear me, for what 1 have to tell thee is of her. 
I was hiding where thou hadst placed me, and the melancholy of my exile was sweetened by 
the hope of thine advent. My piercing eyes were travelling day and night in my oscillations 
from the Zenith to the Xadu" waiting for the apparition of thy beauty when thou shouldst 
come to throw on me the radiance of thy bounties ..." and she paused and gazed 
silent and enraptured at the fascinating eyes of War . . . "I was waiting . . . 
waiting . . . and waiting is so long . . . when gradually tliere grew upon me a 
feeling which I could not explain. I felt a thrill, then a shiver, then a shudder, and I heard 
coming towards me, vaguely at first, then growing more disthict, lamentable and pitiful 
an ocean of sobs, which rent my heart, and from that time I have not had an instant of life 


which has not been filled with compassion and sorrow. " What are you?" said I to the 
sobbing peaids of the immense waves, and diamond-like they rolled to my heart, and beating, 
against its core, they said, 'We are the tears of Kari, the tears that she shed in her desolation 
when she had lost her son for ever ; we are worlds, we are countless, we roll and surge and run, 
we want War, because Kari is no more, because she has vanished in tears, because we are 
Kari's life, and thou shalt come with us if thou wilt.' .... I followed them, we 
searched for thee, and I grew sadder day by day because our search was vain. We went 
on, rolling and rolling for ever so long, expecting every instant that we should meet thee, 
and the abyss was so lifeless, and the thought that thou mightest be lost for ever was eating 
away the cherished hope of my heart . . . To live without thy love ! Oh, God, is it to 
live at all, or to have died, or to be cursed with all the pangs of anguish and despair? " 

War stood motionless, his eyes, brighter than ever, always fixed on the sweet face of 
Atah . . . He was pale, and his lips trembled as though he were muttering words of 
great pith and moment, but he uttered not one, and was deaf to the tumult and fracas which 
the sudden stoppage of his flight had caused among his followers, who were rushing one 
on top of the other, and forming a huge barrier, becoming every moment larger and larger. 
. . . At last he looked round, made a sign to the nearest of his followers, and saying to 
them, " Follow me, let us make haste," he took Atah in his arms, and on they went, followed 
by the multitude of asters, who, now that their course was no longer impeded, rolled down 
with the tremor of a rush more formidable and appalling than anything ever heard in the 

Exhausted by her long flight in search of War, worn out with fatigue and emotion, Atah 
had no sooner been taken into his arms than she lost consciousness, but in her sleep, as her 
head rested on his chest, she saw the heart of War rent by dolour, and pouring out an impetuous 
stream of blood, like a river, and she felt as if she had caused that ocean of sorrow to burst 
forth. She felt that she was going down in it, first her feet, then her ankles, then her knees, 
her hips, and as she sank deeper and deeper the heat became more and more intense ; when 
it touched her breast she had a terrible pang, and when her neck was reached she suffered 
all the agonies of strangulation, her temples throbbed as though they must burst at the next 
pulsation, and she heard repeated over and over again at each beat " Kari ! Mother ! Kari ! 
Mother! ..." and strange . . . the voice was sweet in contrast with the roaring 
noise which filled her head. At last she felt that the blood had touched her pale lips which 
became paler ami that she had sunk, and in trying to rise again to the surface of the stifling 
blood she opened her eyes and found herself in the arms of War, resting on his breast, but the 
vision w-as only too true, the chest of War was all torn ami covered with streams of blood. 

" Atah," said War, bending over her, " Where hast thou left the river of tears? " 

" Yonder," said Atah, pointing with her white arm. 

" Where? " cpioth War. 

" Down there at the horizon, where it crosses thy course." 

" We shall soon be there," said War, and turning to his followers he ordered them to 
slacken their speed and to be ready to stop. 

When arrived there, balancing swiftly on their axes, all the worlds were held entranced 
ui the suspense of ecstasy before the marvels of that river of pearls, the extent and depth 
of which could not be even dreamed of, rolling in its waves all kinds of magic colours and 
hues, which had never been seen before, and reflecting from the depth of its bed to the little 
drops of its ebb, all the fascinating sweet and eternal brilliancy of light. 

War stood motionless and sad ; he had rested Atah on the border of the river, where the 
little waves having recognised her, tried, but in vain, to attract her attention; she was 
absorbed in the contemplation of War, and for her nothing else existed, and War was sad. 
He was looking at the eddies of the river flowing ; following the bubbles rising, disappearing, 
shining, turning back to glance at him, and throwing to his heart the sparkles of their bright 
eyes; at times he thought that in their sweet iiuiniuir they were singing. 


" War ! The bright son ol Kan ! \\ c an- glad, sparkling, shining ; wo run and How and 
foam for thee ; wc are pearls, emeralds, rubies, dropping, iliving, rising for thee ; wu are thy 
Mother Kari ; we Hit along rellecting thee, looking at thee, son of Kari ; we dingle, roll, and 
sing for thee." 

Then they seemed to sob, and throb, and fall leaden, heaving, sighing, jerking with 
pain at the dragging of this weary refrain. 

" We are pure but bitter ; we burned the eyes of thy mother ; we are sad, though brightly 
clad ; in sorrow shed, by despair led ; we arc poor Kari's longuigs ; the tears she wept when 
War had left, her long mourning, her slow dying. We shall be forever, we know, sobbing, 
throbbing, rolling, sullen, leaden sorrow." 

And Atah, who had been following the thoughts of War, was suffering all his j^angs and 
his silent anguish. 

Suddenly War turneil round, and addressing several of his followers who were close to 
him, he said, " Thou, Glowing Gold, go to the north ; thou, Lazuli, to the West; you two white 
lights and thou. Emerald, to the South, down where there are those four asters which look 
towards us now. As for thee," said he to anotlu'r, " thou siialt go and rule in that region 
which is north of that cluster of stars yonder. I know your mind," continue<l War, " 1 know 
it. Do not think that I exile you from me. f give you the greatest jiroof of m\- loxc You 
shall be the guardians and protectors of Atah. and let everything perish rather than anytlung 
happen to her; I leave you these two dogs, which will be ready day and night to help you in 
your watch." 

" Oh, God ! " exclaimed Atah, " Oh, God ! Love of my heart ! Life ! Hope ! Dost 
thou cast me off? " 

" My mother is between us ! " 

" Oh ! War, have pity. War, what will become of me? " 

"Look at the river, Atah. I love thee, Atah. I would die for thee. I would ravish, 
burn, and remould the whole of the universe. I would that I had never been born. I am 
mad, and the whole of my life will be a torture to feel that I have lost thee." 

" Oh, War ! As God annihilate me, let me disappear, burn my life out with one of 
thy divine looks . . ." 

" Though a God I cannot destroy. To attempt to do what thou askest would only be 
to attract to me the whole of thy being. My mother Kari is, and will ever be, between us. 
She is no more but a river of tears. Sit by its banks, and in their eternal rolling down its 
pearls will speak to thee of me. I shall pass by it ever\- day. I shall look at thee, and the 
sobbing of the waves will always tell to me what thou hast told to them." 

" Oh. God ! I must obey. Oh, War, I will follow thee with my eyes and feel a thrill 
of happiness if thou but look at me when passing by the river," and as she spoke a tear of 
blood dropped from her eye. W'ar could not resist it. He went to her, took the tear, and gave 
it to Lazuli, saying, " Take that treasure, it is a tear shed by Atah when parting from War. 
It shall be under thy guard, and be known henceforth as the brightest ruby of the whole 

His chest swelling with emotion. War looked once more towards Atah, then with a 
heroic effort, worthy of a God, he tore himself away from that contemplation, and taking 
with him his train of followers he dived into space with the swiftness of a dart. 

After having rolled during long ages, throughout the inlinite expanse. War chose as 
his abode the region through which flowed the river of tears . . . There he located his 
followers, allotting to each a given course to be gone through at an appointed time. He 
was meditating as to what he should do with some thousands of them who had always 
kept at the rear of the train at a long distance from him . . . He called them, and they 
did not dare to disobey, but moved with reluctance and approached him crawling and 
supplicating, with their heads dowTi as though afraid to show their faces. 

" Stand upright ! " ordered \Var. " Stand I tell you," and he recognised familiar faces. 
They were a legion of warriors sent by Timu to capture his son War. 


War questioned several of them, and they answered as best they could ; some of them 
went so far as to say that, fascinated by his glory, they had chosen to follow his course rather 
than return to Timu, who had now grown very old indeed; that in their hearts they had 
always paid allegiance to the \'aliant son of Kari, and that what they had done, which seemed 
not in accordance with this, was done to obey orders which they could not neglect at the risk 
of their lives. 

War listened to them for several days, not showing any outward sign of approval or con- 
demnation , and each came and told his tale and showed his case in the most favourable light 
At last every one having spoken, a dreary silence prevailed, and War was thinking. 
" It shall be done," he said to himself, and he shouted this order : " Asters of all 
magnitudes, sent by Timu, range yourselves in battle, form a huge and impenetrable sphere 
protected by the darts of your light ; and let me meet you in that order when I shall appear 
at the horizon under the sign of Atah by the river of tears." 

None of the asters could understantl, l)ut all had to obey, and when War returned he 
found them formed as he had commanded. He approached them and spoke thus : 

" The words I spake to you in the presence of my venerable father Timu have proved 
but too true. For all of you tlie time of forbearance is at an end, courtly flattery, heinous 
hvpocrisy, villainous treachery, base treason, are of no avail. Patient Justice has got her 
hand on ingratitude and felony. It is time for you to obey orders of my old father, God 
Timu, and to capture his son whom you once called ' War, the rebel.' You forced Timu to 
expel him. To you he gave the order to capture him. Obey that order of my father." 

But the sphere was motionless, and gave no sign of life. 

" Obey, I tell you ! Move, or I crush you ! " 

But not the slightest oscillation answered to his call. 

"Cowards! Unworthy of the name of beings! Shame and refuse of the universe ! I 
would that I might destroy you all. I would give my life that I might do it in the presence 
of my mother Kari, and in the sight of little Atah. Woe and malediction on you all ! " . . 
and he rushed on to the sphere, penetrating it to the full length of his arm, and on like that 
he went, dealing blows at it in all directions. He then took a handful of his fiery mane and 
thrust it into the centre of the sphere, which began to burn and vomit lire and lava from all 
the holes made l)y his blows. Stung by the violence of the heat, several asters attempted 
to disintegrate themselves from the mass and flee, but the watchful War was there to throw 
them back into the whirlpools of the burning craters. The roar and crackling of the fire and 
thunder of the bursting volcanoes were echoes in all the remotest regions of space. 

" Thou art unjust ! " hissed a crater in which were l)oiling all the curses ever heard. 

" I punish traitors; every one of them shall perish ! " 

" Thou art cruel," shrieked another crater. 

" I cannot inflict on you one-millionth jiart of the torture you have inllicted on my mother, 
whom your hypocrisy has caused to be turned into a river of tears." 

" Fientl ! " fizzed a third crater. " Curse on thee ! Rebel ! Usurper ! Destroyer! who 
wast once my brother ! " 

" I did not rebel, but fletl away in obetlience to my father. I ilid not usurp, but took 
possession of the wilderness of infinitude. 1 do not destroy but transform. I will reduce 
you in the crucible of justice to the ideal immobility which has been your dream for ages ; 
you shall not live Init sleep, without sensation, emotion, hope . . love . . . inexactly 
to which you would have reduced the whole of the universe, which is not, if it be not full 
of activity, passion, and longings for the yet unknown avenues of futurity." 

And henceforth, deaf to the imprecations and curses vomited in a constant rush from 
the lips of all the volcanoes, mixed with the lava of white fire which was now spreading over 
all the surface of the globe. War only stood watching, in order to prevent any aster from 
escaping, and when the whole was covered with lava, he re-entered his usual course and 
started rolling and rolling as lu' has done ever since, visiting every day the river of tears and 



throw iug a glance at sweet little Atah, who may be seen to tremble with emotion when the 
Ijrilliant look of her beloved reaches the Southern Cross, attentling to all the myriads of 
little worlds ol the univer>e, niu\ co\-ering tiieni with all tiie joys of plenty and beauty, 
jjouring out hope and faith o\er every thing that is, and leturning everyday to see if his orders 
have been obeyed, and if new wants are born for his bounties, knowing not leisure or rest, 
ever rolling . . . taking care of everything, from the invisible atom to the greatest of 
his satellites. 

In his ilaily course, War had always to pass before the burned sphere which was now 
cooling rapidly, and presented to his gaze immense craters full to the brim of their cups with 
lava, plateau of such a stretch that it would take two days for an emu to run across them, 
and colossal ritlges of such an altitude that their summits would be beyond the reach of the 
eye of man it he were standuig at tluir fiit, .md |)rojecting shadows twice as long as from here 
to Parramatta, the Tribe of the lu'ls. War alwa\s looked with interest at those lifeless remains 
wfiose stony features typified well a race of beings who did not believe in activity, sympathy, 
and the omnipotence of irresistible Love, and who claimed, after having blindly and pitilessly 
comlcmned all that was outside the pale of their congregation, that the only thing real and 
justifiable w^as an order established immutably on the de(luctions of pure intellect, the 
intellect to be their owm, and the whole universe to bi- ruiid, crushed, tortured, and crystal- 
lised by them for all eternity. 

Then in the prime of youth, the earth was covered with the marvels of iier jnolilic fecundity. 
]£verything seemed to be promptetl by the inner force of aspiration to rush madly out of its 
allotted cycle of e.xistence and to invade the kingtlom beyond the pale of which it found itself. 
From out of the crater of Life were then projected in all directions forms of now unknown 
character, some tlestined to survive, some to perish forgotten, all having to undergo the most 
indescribable transformations operated by the irresistible push of life under the breath of a 
universal rut. Circumstances now foreseen and explained were then of a formidable and 
terrifying nature, sudden changes, unexpected turmoils, elements, hitherto stable and 
immutable, melting and rushing like lightning into the seething cauldron of transmutation; 
mineral, vegetable, and animal life intermingled and producing in their counter-activity 
phenomena which have long since disappeared, leaving behind them only some vestiges of 
their being, some preserved in the layers of the rocks, some having survived by adapting 
themselves to new circumstances, and which now offer to our interrogative minds hints of 
what once was but has disappeared for ever. Oh, what a time it must have l)een ! How 
wonderful ! What an extraordinarily chaotic, superb, fascinating spectacle ! We can form 
no just idea of it, yet if we open our eyes and look intently at the surviving remains, what 
can we not imagine? All the forces interpenetrating each other, senses and sexes being born 
to them by every effort in the blind struggle for life ; senses unconscious of their bearing, 
acting blindly, rushing headlong into hermaphroditism or into bisexuality, whirling madly 
in the spiral of aspirations towards a new state, upwards, downwards, always . 
thrown out at a most unexpected tangent, or drawn towards the centre, there to be crushed 
out of all shape and sucked into a new amalgamation, into the sudden birth of an undreamed-of 
phenomenon. Germs of all varieties now carried by the whirlwinds into the awful and 
heaving bosom of the tempest, then dropped on a rock seared and burning under the rays 
of a scorching sun, to be overtaken in a minute by the surging, passing, irresistil^le wave, 
running, rushing, splashing, searching for a road to return to its ocean. 

In the midst of the turmoil the most interesting changes taking place ; the mollusc 
deserting the pearls of the ocean, gradually climbing the cliffs, and at last carrying its stone 
house with him into the darkness of the forest, where, having become a land snail, he will see 
the gigantic sensiti\e. whose shoots pierce the dense clouds, and whose aims stretch towards 
each other to clench and strangle to death the mammoth who comes to disturb the harmony 


of their growth; the colossal reptiles dividing their time between the ocean and the land, 
till one day some of their family desert the original stock and establish themselves exclusively 
on land, then some of them grow wings and try to fly. like the bat, a quadruped who, having 
grown tired of crawling on the ground, took at last to soar in the air and has done so ever since. 
Why has the flying lizard disappeared ? Probably because the jump from the reptile to the 
bird was too great; the lizard fell to the ground and was killed in its fall. The flying fish 
also falls a bit, its fall on the supple and undulating couch of the transparent waves, and is 
able to rise again and again to salute the sun and reflect his rays on its silver scales and on the 
glittering ribs of its delicately woven fins. 

The duck leaves the land and takes to the water ; in his lirst abotle there are too many 
dangers attendant on his efforts to live, so he takes to the ocean ; some of the tribe remain 
close to the shore, the limitless horizon strikes them with awe. so they keep to the rocks enjoy- 
ing the quiet life of fishers, floating leisurely, staying in shallow water, diving perchance, 
but never flying, thus losing their wings which are very soon reduced to the size and uses 
of fins. Others having remained behind in tlie fresh water of the river have also taken to 
diving, hiding in the moving mud of the bottom, waiting there for the little fishes to come 
into their gaping bills, whilst the pioneers of the movement have grown tremendous wings 
of colossal strength, by living in eternal flight over the vast and limitless regions of the 
formidable oceans. 

Analogous migrations, alterations, transformations, assuredly have taken place in 
each of what we call to-day the three natural kingdoms of the earth ; the tortoise of the sea 
and that of the land are easy to differentiate now, so are the corals, the algae of all descriptions, 
and the ferns, grasses, varech, and fungi, which we find at the bottom of the valleys of the 
ocean, as well as on the highest and most inaccessible peaks of the mountains of the earth, 
where we also discover fossfls of fishes, whilst from the depths of the sea are brought to our 
astonished eyes the remains of gigantic trees and terrestrial animals. 

Who shall say what has been? From whence shall spring the generation of knowers, 
who will give us a true picture of that unknown period? 

What is the seal? From what original father has he inherited his beautiful, velvety, 
black eye, his fleshy mouth, his awfully human voice which has in it something rending and 
troubling to the highest degree. Who wfll tell us of the magnificent vegetation we admire 
every day? Did it come from the sea, and taking advantage of each inlet, of the mouth of 
everjr river, did it invade the land, or had it its birth on the land, and, following the gentle 
brook, has it floated on in crystalline streams and ran to the conquest of the virgin and till 
then barren .slopes of the mountains of the sea, fertilising the whole of them, spreading its 
carpet of j)earls, corals, fantastic flowers, jind fruits on the and ])lains. which are now covered 
with all the colours of the rainbow? \\'hen tlu' storm is to.^smg about the emerald waves 
of the liquid mass it is given to our amazed glance to admire the treasures with which the 
bosom of the ocean is covered. W'e sliall never be able to ap{5reciate the whole of creation, 
the whole of life, which is equally wondirful in ;i droji of water, a range of rocks, a bit of stone, 
in flowers, insects, animals, man, stars, and in .dl tliat we can see with the I'ye ot tlu' body or 
the eye of the mind 

The legend says that at this time our now poor lantl was divided into two mighty stretches 
of country by a big lake, which was lying across the path of the sun. This lake was of the 
purest and most transparent water, and in it were big and small fishes of every kind and colour 
golden, silvery, red, blue, yellow, dark, light, long, short, round, egg-like, with stripes and 
spots, of all forms :\nt\ l)rilliancv; and to look at them was a common delight of the people 
who used to glide alxait in their canoes in all directions on the glossy surface of the lake, 
people altogether unconcerned about their destination, knowing that they had only to open 
their sail and let the sweet odorant breeze jnish them to any part of the .shore, and that they 
would be sure cjI finding all that is neeijful or iileasant, 


Oh, wliat a sij^lit it must luive been! White swans almost inmunerable, openiuf^ and 
flapping their wings as soft to the eye as the chalice of an Arum ; bUie, red, and white lilies, 
opening under the radiancy of the sun; white sails, cockatoos of all kinds, butterflies and 
flying flshcs, mirroring themselves in the deep and transparent water ; voices of men, chatter 
of women, admiration of children at the sight of every new thing, songs of birds, joy of 
all, flUing the air with their tremulous waves and blending themselves with the harmonies 
of the land, which whisperetl all the eniotions they had gatlu>red among the palms, the odorant 
fruits, the suave flowers, and the superb shiny banana trees with fruit as sweet in its fragrance 
as it is in giving strength to the mother who milks, or to the child who has been taken from 
her breast. 

A country teeming witli all the luxuries Nature could alford from the most fantastic 
flowers, among which fluttered birds of every colour, to the most varied fruits, some lying 
on the ground in the meailows, others decorating the arches formed by the branches of 
gigantic trees, here almost hidden by the intermingling creepers, there hanging in bunches 
at arm length, giant ferns seeming to have grouped together on the hill slopes in order to afford 
man a shelter against the dew of the night and the burning kiss of the mid-day sun. Abund- 
ance and plenty everywhere, and comfort, happiness, and good-will reigning supreme. 
Covetousness, hypocrisy, lying, mine and thine, were then unknown ; everyone was a law 
unto himself, and Nature a lavish and tender mother to all. 

.\las, alas, my poor land ! What has befallen thee? I last thou sunk low enough 
under the curse of degradation? Thou art like a deserted flre-place on the heath, where only 
a few blackened stones remain to inform the passer-by tiiat in some past season was held 
there a mighty corroboree of a tribe which is now uu more, a tribe- which has been carried 
away by the angry winds with the ashes of the last lire ; a heath where it would be impossible 
to find even a bleached bone, cleared, as it has been, by the crows, the eagle-hawks, and the 

Well ! Well ! It is said that the wise man lets the past rest in its grave, and that 
the memory of lost happiness is a torturing scourge to the fallen one. Be things as they 
are since we cannot alter them 

Ages and ages of that happiness had been bestowed on our forefathers, who enjoyed 
it in its fulness, and lived a life of purity and contentment without the shadow of a vice or 
the idea of a sin. 

One night, after everybody had as usual retired under the verdant roof of the ferns 
to enjoy among their colonnades refreshing slumber, an extraordinary and terrifying noise 
was heard, and everyone on awakening beheld the usually placid roof of heaven offering a 
spectacle never heard of before, never dreamed of, and they were all struck with stupor. 
Bent on an eastward course it seemed that all the stars of the sky were madly rushing, inter- 
crossing, knocking against each other, and their mighty progress was producing such an 
awful noise that even from here it was like the roaring of ten mighty oceans. 

In the white light produced by the rush of so many stars everybody looked aghast, 
and the heart of each was filled with terror ; everyone's eyes were intently fixed on the heavens, 
and no one dared to utter a w-ord, all — -men, women, old people, children — remained silent, 
motionless, terrified, till the sun appeared on the opposite side of the lake. But though 
so eagerly longed for, his appearance tended to increase rather than to soothe their fears. 
He, The Great Dispeller, the only giver of Life; He, too, was obscured, and it was only now 
and then that the bright Ijeams of his great eye could pierce the dense crowd, the enormous 
mass of stars which were floating round him and appeared dark as the resin of bulrushes 
in the limbo of his beauty. 

Great was the consternation, deep the sorrow, unfathomable the terror. The wisdom 
of the old had vanished, the hopes of the young were blasted, and all stood haggard. 

Many a long day, many a dreary night thus passed by, begun in expectation, closed in 
bitter disappointment. Xo one was able to account for the misfortune, and as it often happens 


nowadays amongst men who have fallen into the clutches of misery, they began to look 
askance at each other, the venom of doubt had been instilled into their bosoms, and they 
asked themselves, who was the cause of it, who had brought upon them such a malediction? 
Dark thoughts, dire terrors, and constant fear seized upon them and took away the charms 
of the lake, the forest, the meadows, which were themselves languishing and growing sadder 
and sadder at not hearing the old joyous songs, not seeing any of the bright birds, not 
receiving, each and all, the waited for, sweet, warm kiss of the sun. 

As after a few days they noticed that the rush of the stars was diminishing gradually, 
and that the sun was regaining his usual appearance, owing to the stars forming themselves 
into a compact mass which only at times obstructed his light, they began to hope that 
as soon as the rush would stop altogether there would be an end of all the trouble, and tliough 
not over confident, they surmised in their heart that they passed the worst of it; but alas ! 
the worst was still to come. 

You will remember that last night I told you how, after having allotted to his followers 
the empire he had conquered. War summoned the rear of his train, and, having recognised 
in them an expedition sent against him by his father Timu, he provoked them to fight, and 
chastised in the most exemplary manner their reluctance to do so. How he took care that 
none of them should escape, and left his work only when the whole of their mass was covered 
with burning lava ; but in the attack he made on them his anger was so great and the blows 
he dealt so intense that he did not notice that one of them was so direct and strong that Paouri, 
the son of Poura, had been precipitated by it into infinitude and escaped his chastisement, 
unwillingly it is true, but still escaped it, falling headlong into the fathomless abyss. 

He was thrown away from the aggregate mass with such a jerk and so unexpectedly 
that he lost consciousness, and fell with a terrible thud into the bed of the lake, out of which 
was splashed every drop of water, its enormous sheets playing havoc all over the land, washing 
away groves and meadows, uprooting all the giants of the forest, and leaving behind it 
nothing but bareness and desolation. 

Ah me ! I know of no words with which to tell of the consternation and despair which 
attended the catastrophe. How could I give any idea of such a heavy blow? Heaving, 
jerking, and panting as does the mutilated fish thrown on the cliffs by the irresistible push 
of the waves, there lay in the lake's bed the broken and crushed remains of Paouri's body. 

The fiery, sulphurous, and stifling exhalations it gave out in all directions caused the 
people to flee madly away towards the unknown in the wilderness, where at every step they 
found the corpses of some of their friends who, choked by the smoke, or dying from hunger 
and thirst, had fallen there never to rise again. The fumes seemed to grow stronger and 
stronger, the heat was intense, and all seemed doomed to perish ; men and things were turning 
black like fish, whose silvery and golden scales blacken in the smoke and lose forever all the 
brilliancy of their lovely colours. Thus were our forefathers changed into blacks which they 
have been ever since, and will continue to be until the last of them shall have found rest and 
happiness in death. 

Poor parents of mine ! maddened with thirst and himger, tlyuii; blindly they knew not 
where, chased by the awful stench and unbcaral)lc heat, w]iip])ed on by dire destiny, falling, 
rising, struggling on again, urged by the last whisper of hoi>e, exhausted by fatigue, tlieir 
backs scorched, their feet blistered, Iheir cars and eyes bU-cdiug ; crouching, screaming, 
gasping, dying, whilst their famished brothers stopped lor an instant, looketl at them- 
hesitated, tlien went mad. and . . . horrible to tell ! ate their llesh and drank greedily 
the few drops of blood which rcm.-iincd in their jioor cxhaiistecl bodii^'s. 

When the white man shall have undcr.^oue such calamities and jiassed tluougli such 
hardships and despair, then, and then only, will it be time for him to condemn without miti- 
gation the cannibalism of our forefathers, whose tortures gave them not one moment of respite 
that they might turn away and consider the heinousness of their actions. 


lew were those who siuvived, and when the scourge had at last done its worst, and 
they wandered through scared heath and limitless stretches of devastated country, they 
saw that tluir land was henceforth doomed, a place of desolation with here and there 
some poor stunted shrubs and shrivelled trees inhabited by crows, eaglehawks, and mopokes ; 
and they burned their hands and feet when trying to touch the rivulets of liquid gold which, 
still hot from the heart of Paouri, were flowing in all directions, till they at last found a crack 
m the rock by wliieti to (ie>Lend uUi) the bowels of the earth, there to hide and cool their 
glittering drops. They were glad to discover the tendency of that blood to disappear from 
the surface of the land, and when it had done so, they set out with a forlorn hope to return 
to their beloved lake and to see what had become of the groves, meadows, and forests in which 
they had once known all the blessings of joy and plenty. 

Their search was lont^ and \ain, not tht' slightest \estigt; was there to l;e found, and 
they were going to give up tin- search in despair, when one evening, after a long day's march, 
they had no sooner stretclied themselves on tlie bart' ground after iuivmg partaken of a meal 
made out of the roots of the shrubs they had met with on their wa\-, than the wind began 
to blow, bearing with it that peculiar stink of rottenness wliicli was then quite new to them. 
Before daybreak they were on their way again following the breeze towards the centre 
of that corruption. The sun had not yet risen high in the heaven when they saw before them 
a huge mass of deadly putrefaction ; there lay the remains of Paouri —this was the corpse of 
the odious scourge. As the stench was unbearable, they went round in order to come between 
the breeze and it, and tried, though cautiously, to ap])r()aeh tlic rtinams of the monster. 
Some of the most daring came near enough to touch it. imt as soon as tliev had removed a 
part of its scale-like hide, they saw to their tlismay tliat it was full of worms which rushed 
madl}^ out, darting their poisonous fangs from out the gaps of their scarlet gums an<l biting 
all those unfortunates who had come within their reach and wlio succuml)e(l in a lew instants 
to the effects of the deadly venom. 

So it happened that by the will of blind and capricious destiny our land was devastated, 
and our race degraded, and we received iit exchange for all we had lost the gold which corrupts, 
and the snakes of hypocrisy, flattery, deceit, cowardice, ami greed which poisons all. 


By the shore of the river of tears Atah sat thoughtful and anxious. Hi-r twinkling eyes 
had grown tired watching ever for the apparition of War, her lielo\-e<l, and day after day 
he had at last appeared throwing to each and all the penetrating warmtli of liis love, the 
dazzling spears of his light. 

From the smallest to the greatest of his satellites all were set oscillating unconsciously 
in the happiness and glory of his visitation. Atah, also, was fascinated, and partook in the 
concert of the universe, but it was not only like the others because War was superb, magni- 
ficent, and irresistible, but because she loved him with passion, because she alone, among all, 
knew more of him than the dispensation of daily life; she had l)een resting in his arms, and 
had received in one kiss the exultation of love eternal. 

Every morning he arrived with the gorgeous burst of iiis radiations, invading, lightning- 
like, the whole of the universe, and Atah was so overpowered by so much glory that she did 
not realise that his first glance had been in search of her, and so her heart was heavy, her eyes 
full of sadness. 

■' Woe ! Woe on me I " did she cry. " The dire and sweet ])assion has taken such 
possession of my whole being that I am deaf to the songs of the river ; my tears blind me to the 
beauty of its coloured bed, to the sweet undulating shades of its waves in which I used to see 
reflected the image of my beloved. I sit here hopeless by the l)rink of this dark abyss, by 
this lake of vacuum where there is no sign of life till War appears to pierce its void with the 
spears of his radianc>-, and when he has passed away, when I cease to regret his disappearance. 


and begin to look forward to his return, here again is the abyss, which, surrountled by one 
of the river's arms, offers to my despair the lifeless and dreary contemplation of its unfathom- 
able and empty depth. When I am wearied into immobility and my tears have ceased to 
flow, then come back the host of my small neighbours, ottering me the flat and unpalatable 
solace of what they call reason. Poor things ! They do not know; they have never tasted 
the supreme rapture of the warm and perfumed kiss. How could they understand the cravings 
of my heart, and the consuming aspirations of the whole of my being? They speak of time, 
distance, duty, propriety, rights. What is all that to the writhing of the soul, to the throb 
of my heart, to the pulse of my life, to the impulse of my love? My love, is it not incom- 
mensurable as inffnitude, is it anything else to me but infinitude itself? Is it not fuller, 
stronger than anything which has been, is, or shall be? Can anyone love more than I do? 
Is the great and generous heart of my radiant War fuller than mine, have his eyes shed more 
tears, has his soul been deeper than mine in the abyss of suftering and despair? What are 
the pangs of the whole universe to the everlasting bursting of my heart, which is full of him 
and ' lives of dolour '? After all, my little neighbours are doing it out of kindness and wish, 
some of them at least, to see me happy, in the condition in which they consider it has been 
a great honour for me to be placed, and, accustomed for ages to their daily, nightly, eternal 
volitions in the same passionless, monotonous existence they cannot understand that such 
a life is in its agony an eternal death ; born into paralysis they fail to understand the bleeding 
joys of activity. For them triumph and fall, smile and tear, genius and madness, love and 
despair, life and death, are of ditfert'ut essences, and they shun the one from fear of the other 
But why should 1 tluniv of them? . . . great or small, the asters which stud 
the depth of space . . . they are nothing to me, they do not even exist because they 
cannot pour from out of their bosom any of tlie sympathy whieli makt-s us kin, and without 
which one remains a stranger to all." 

'" Too long have I been helpless in my dreary immobility ! loo long, too long ! . . 
To be I must live, to live I must act, I must rush at any cost towards the object of my life, 
towards the centre of my love. 

So said Atah, and tlie deed followed the thought. 

As she started on her journey, her guardians made aware of it by the disturbance caused 
among the surrounding asters, who became agitated like waves, whose tides are troubled 
by a cataclysm, lost control of themselves and began to tremble and give way, and the change 
in their respective positions is still to be seen in the ill-shaped figure which before that time 
offered the image of a perfect cross, the centre of which was occupied by poor little Atah. 

Her efforts lasted as long as the night, autl deaf to the voices of her guardians she was 
on the ])oint of escaping from the barrier formed by them, when the radiant face of War 
appeared on the horizon. Notwithstanding her unifinching resolve, sweet Atah stopped 
and remained motionless as she was wont to do every morning, lost in the contemplation of 
the. beauty of her beloved God. 

At a glance at the altered position of the asters. War realised that sometliing had gone 
wrong, and in an instant he was hearing an account of it from the guardians of Atah. 

Not knowing the real motives, which, as it always happens, were misconstrued or rather 
given from prejudiced witnesses. War went uj) to Atah who tremljled with joy at his approach. 

" I wanted thee, my God ! " did slie cry. " I wanted thee. I thought that thou hadst 
forgotten me." 

" Forgotten ! " answered War, with a strange expression on his face where the rapture 
of love and the sadness of omniscience were intermingled and increased his already incom- 
parable beauty. " Forgotten, my sweet Atah ! The remembrance of love is eternal, 
imperishable. Forgotten ! I often wish that it were possible, but what has been is, and 
shall be forever . . . All the junvers of the Gods, all the heroism, all the sacrifice cannot 
erase one minute of the past. Why hast thou doubted me? What have I done that my 
bleeding heart should be tortured by the one 1 have loved so deeply, and who knows why I 


cannot take her to my tiosom. Atah, mj- love ! 1 hy liod iniplons thy i)ity. I h' ihseiveN 
the whole of it, because he feels more, he suffers more than any one else . . . Look down 
the river," said he, sadly, " have I not lieen the cause of those tears? " 

" It is I, it is I," said Atah, her head bent on her heaving breast on which were falling 
the di\ine tears. 

And War was thoughtful .... 

" Sweet Atah, beloved darling of mine, it was madness to \\ i>li that I might have forgotten 
ill, it 1 had ni'\-('r liccn born, never seen thei' . . . Oh, l'"ate, impassable and cursed 
tor all, but d()ubl\- dire to me because 1 am j^reater I Atah, mine ! l.ove of my life ! Tlirob 
of my heart 1 llo^ie of my future ! l>c thou wise, let ])ati(nce and reason iigulate thine 

"Patience ! Reason ! My God ! Is not patience at its f)est but cowartlice, immobilit}', 
dreariness itself? .\nd reason : is it anything else than crystallised madness? Shut out of 
life, isolated from the universe by its shortsightedness, it knows not tin- (HviiU' emotion of 
the heart, the sublime light of thine eyes, it percei\es only the sccuching of the skin. Patience 
and reason ! Have they ever haxl anything to do with thy valour, and that enthusiasm which 
has carried everything in thy train? Have they gi\en thee tlu- Pm])ire of the Pui\-erse, 
have they given thee the whole of my heart? Seek their ad\ici', my (iod, and tliey will 
whisper in thine ear all the Ijlasphemies ever heartl, ever dreamed of, and ask tlier to descend 
from thy glory into the selfishness of the beast. They will condemn as stujud the indis- 
criminate outpouring of thine ocean of bounties on all that is. They will hiss into thy 
heart the venom of their narrow dicta and treat thy generous symj^athies, thy vigilance, thy 
devotion, thyactivity, thy giving away all for nothing, as a {practice only couduci\-e to ex- 
haustion, senility, and decay. Patience and Reason ! Yes, if I had not received the strong 
embrace of my God and his sweet penetrating kiss — if I had not known the ecstacy of his 
contemplation — yes, if I had not tasted his odorant breath mingled witii mine if 1 
had not felt in a thrill sublime that I was inhal)ite(l for ever ! " 

" Hast thou not spoken of hope, of future? Are they not another name for Pove which 
is all in all, the sublime force without which everything would cease to be, nothing could 
ever have been." 

"Oh! Speak again those sweet words and let me forget the otiiers ; they are tiie 
only words which should piass thy lips and fall m the mlinitude as set'ds from which, under 
thy gaze, would germinate new worlds. Speak to me, War, my beloved, gi\e me words that 
I may treasure and repeat in m\- solitude, where 1 can do nothing l)ut wait for thy ap|)arition, 
dream of thy love . . . and hope for evei" 

Though greater in de})th and more formidable and jjotent, the love of tiu' Gods is of the 
same essence as the love of mortals, and it has ne\i'r been heai'd that it has been wanting; in 
echo, has failed at last to conciner. 

War had been listening and found himself under the charm ol his beiovcil little .\tah. 
He stood erect, trembling with emotion, in a subUme |)ride which 1k' had never felt before. 
His heart was beating slowly, now and then with heavy thuds which sloj)ped his breath, his 
face w^as pale, and the colour in his lips went and came with the ])ulsatious of his heart, 
whilst his blue eyes had long lost their diamond brilliancy and seemed absorbed m the con- 
templation of the past, the present, and the future, floating aimlessly in the limitless region 
of a godly consciousness, he was lost in the rapture of love, the only desire of mortals, the 
sublime dream of Gods, the infinite aspiration of all. 

" Blessed be everything, forever ! The joy of joys, the thrillin.!^ of supreme hapi)iuess 
in mine now ! The Past is sweet ! If I have suffered in its womb it was that I might be 
prepared for my advent into that supreme Present, from which I shall be elevated by felicity 
into the dazzling region of the Future. Yes, Atah .... Yes. Love is all. Hope 
and Love. Love and Hope. To-morrow, in an instant full perhaps of burning desires and 
blinding, bleeding despair, reckoned by the unknowing as millions of years, in a minute of 


eternity, when my worship, my regret, my humble remorse, my life of sacrifice, my deep 
love, shall have redeemed my past, and my terrible meditations shall have dried up in the 
expanse of the abyss the bed of the river of my mother's tears, when it shall no more exist, 
but shall all have been absorbed by thee and by me, then thou shalt be the Queen of Infinitude, 
the Mistress of the Dark, the one who shall sleej) in my arms and dream all the supreme dreams 
of undisturbetl felicity. Wait," said War, kissing the eyes of Atah, "live, and hope; 
to-day is pregnant with the birth of to-morrow." 

" I shall hope. I must love, 1 will wait, and like thee do all in my power to redeem the 
past and drain from its bosom the last tear of thy mother Kari. I would that I had thy 
strength, thy power ! I would throw my light on all sorrow, soothe all despair, heal all wounds, 
give love to all, and thus redeem all regrets and drink all the ocean of thy mother's tears, 
keep them in thy bosom to pour them out of my white breast to all the offspring of thine em- 
braces, to all the valiant sons that 1 have in my womb ready to l)e called forth by the desire 
of thy Divinity." 

" Thou art a doiUless," said War. " Redeem, sacrifice thyself, redeem us, redeem all. 
My mother lives in thee. As I lay on her soft lap milking her white breast, she used to put 
me to sleep with the same words, and it seems to me that I am still a babe listening with 
admiration to her sublhne and simple songs. One of them went like this: — 

" Go to s/cfp, my sweet baby, 
Sleep ami rest on mother's knee ; 
Thou must do so and nrow styo)ig. 
Because one dav, and ere long, 
Thou must go afar hi the deep 
And pour out love and sympathy. 
Soothe despair, help misery. 
Thou hast had of my milk plenty, 
Be good, my babe, and go to sleep, 
My sweet baby. 

It is Idle in the evening, 
I lieat thy gieiit jather coming ; 
He has travelled the abysses. 
Curing despair tvith his sweet kisses. 
Wiping the tears of sorrow. 
Bringing light to the darkness. 
Solving in its deep recess 
The semen of /lis tenderness, 
Giving all joy for the morrow, ' 

Joy instead of sorrow." 

" Do thou bless everyone and everything with the solicitude of thy love. Give, now 
to-morrow, always; there is the whole of Redemption. Now I must act my thoughts and 
leave thee. My love to thee, now and forever." 

" Good-bye, my God," said Atah, with a certain sadness, taking War's hand and raising 
her pure white forehead to him. War took her head between his hands and krssed her with 
passion . 

" Good-bye, Atah," and War was about to turn round, and resume his course when 
Atah said, with the sweetest smile which ever brightened her face : 

" Oh, my beloved ! one moment more, do not leave me thus; I tliought to speak to 
thee of " 

" Of what? " saitl War. 

" Of sympathy, of justice, of love." 

" Do so " answered War. 


" Uost thou leniciubcr," conUiiucd Atah. " what hiippened in tlu- dL'striiction of the 
legion of traitors wliom thou hast burned alive? I do not think thou even perceivedst it 
or ever heard anything about it ; " and Atah gave an account of the escape of Paouri, of his 
fall into the lake, and of the scourge which his corpse had been to the unfortunate land. 
She spoke of the desolation of the country, of the destitution of our forefathers, and implored 
War to do what he could in justice to the harmony of the universe, and for her own sake and 
pleasure, our country lying under her watchfulness, and her long night of expectation having 
been disturl)..! Iiy the piercing lamentations of the unfortunate iniiabitants of the land. 

Having heard the account of what had happened, which had never before reached his 
ears. War was only too glad to promise to do all in his power to set matters right, and to 
recompense in a God -like manner the hind and its poor popuhition who had suffered so much 
at the hands of fatality. 

As soon as he had learned all the facts, he left Atali, promising to come back as soon as 
he could to give her an account of what he should have been able to do for the land. 

Days and nights passed away, but not one of them now could have the slightest tinge 
of dreariness for Atah. Henceforth her life was one of enchantment, delight, and activity; 
she attended wuth devotion and tenderness to the wants of everything placed within her sphere 
which needed help, comfort, or support, and all ielt her influence, so that soon after the 
departure of War, there prevailed such a delicious harmony as had never existed before, 
and Atah waited for his return, listening to the concert of constellations celebrating the 
glory of War, his courage, his exploits, his indomitable and unbounded energy, but particu- 
larly his kindness and his sublime and beneficent sense of pity, which they so called because 
they could only realise that manifestation of love, and had not risen high enough into 
consciousness to understand the divine nature of War. They knew only of his strengtli, 
his omnipotence, of his sweet and fecund generosity, and ignored altogether that the whole 
of it was propelled from the depths of his heart by the force of unfathomable love without 
which there can be no God. 

One morning Atah was balancing in her orb , she was dreamy, and now and then the 
twinkling of her blue eyes, though half wrapped in sleep, was such that every one felt that in 
her repose she was thinking, seeing ; the deep and mysterious sparkle of her black pupil threw 
from under her half-open lids darts which passed like meteors through space, pure reflections 
of the glory of her love. She was thus between watchfulness and sleep, in the void of calm, 
looking without the help of her eyes into the coming future, approaching from the distance, 
unrolling and reforming its involutes as the ocean spreads and recontracts its clear and 
superb waves of emerald and lapis lazuli, before breaking at last on the white sandy beach, 
on the soft bed of the waiting shore, in a magnificent explosion of pearls — pearls vanishing 
like a dream, but a dream which has been — perchance, with the swiftness of meditation, but 
a meditation melting as soon as it appears into the gorgeousness of light and eternity. 

She was there waiting, pervaded w-ith the sweet consciousness that War would come 
back and expecting him every instant ; and her intuitive surmise was soon realised in its 
fulness. Earlier than usual the sky became coloured with the most delightful tints, in which 
were to be found, mingled with the pure white light, the tenderest of pinks and the less metallic 
of the bright yellows. Dancing in the atmosphere, vibrating in the morning light, were seen 
radiating in a constantly increasing circle all the shining points of the darts and spears thrown 
as forerunners from the mane of the approaching God, as sharp as rods of lightning interming- 
ling with their zig-zags. 

^Millions of radii were elongating, spreading themselves and scattering ever larger and 
longer waves, just as we see when we drop a stone into a pool of sleeping water, but with 
this difference — that instead of being produced on a plane surface the waves were developing 
in a spheric movement and expanding in infinitude in a manner which has nothing terrestrial, 
and which in my ignorance I cannot better illustrate than by comparing to the explosion of a 


War soon appeared in all his blazing glory, and went direct to his lovely little Atah. 

" Hail to thee ! Sweet and divine joy of mine. I stand overpowered by the sight of 
thy beauty. Hail to thee ! " 

" Thou art so very kind to have come back so soon," and Atah's eyes, covered with the 
velvety opacity of rapture, drank at the fountain of his beauty. 

" I would that I had been able to come sooner, dearest, but I could not do so. I wanted 
to have news for thee and to have fulfilled thy desire. Since I left thee I have suffered terrible 
pangs ; I have had once more to learn that the Gods themselves have to bend imder the yoke 
of fatality, and that whatever be its stature and the exalted summit it has been called upon 
to occupy, every creature is, after all, nothing but a pitiable and insignificant force when it 
has to do with inexorable and blind fate." 

" I have visited the little globe where lies the land in which thou hast taken so much 
interest, on which thou hast bestowed thy tender pity, I have visited it," said War, " and 
my heart has bled. Alas ! Alas ! I was struck with remorse, terror, and sadness. Is it 
not awful to think that every action, however noble, just, and pure be its motive, carries 
always in its train lamentation and misery? that in the hosannah of every blessing is heard 
the poisoned yell of malediction. Well, Atah mine, I have tried to atone for the crime 
I have unwittingly committed, and I shall not stop until I shall have succeeded in erasing 
completely the very last trace of it. If the past cannot be recalled, if a fault which has been, 
is, and shall be forever, yet it is the duty of everyone, and particularly of a God, to do all 
in his power, ceaselessly and unremittingly, to redeem it in fighting out to the very last the 
consequences of an evil deed." 

" I have learned," continued War pensively, " two things which sadden me : the first 
is, that the land has been so scorched from one end of the continent to the other, that the 
inhabitants are all black, and will not be able to survive the accursed scourge, and it will be 
inhabited by a different race who, I hope, will deal generously to the small remnant of the 
first one. The second is that the thrice accursed gold which ran in mighty rivers from the 
heart of Paouri and sank into the bowels of the earth will be dug out one day and will be the 
chief cause of numberless and indescribable crimes, the atonement for which will take 
centuries of repentance before the long wished for dawn shall at last appear on the horizon. 
As for the worm of hypocrisy which was born from the putrefaction of Paouri's limbs, I 
shall give men wisdom to fight it out, and that same wisdom shall also teach them to dig in 
the earth and reach the stored sheets of water, which, brought to the surface, will transform 
the parched land into the paradise which it was before, into a land of happiness, joy, and 
plenty. Oh, my sweet Atah ! I shall have such solicitude for that poor land of thine ; I 
shall bestow so much care on it, that it will one day be the most lovely of all, the centre to 
which all the inhabitants of the earth will look with admiration, the focus from which shall 
radiate on all the light of the grandest of all civilisations." 

" Oh, War ! How godly is thy heart, how sweet thy love, how beneficent thy sublime 
intelligence, how limitless thy power ! I am filled with gratitude, I sink into nothingness 
when listening to thy sublime work of redemption." 

" Thou art a divine woman, my beloved, but I have not yet finished," said War. "Listen ! 
As I was looking at the little globe, scrutinising everything, trying to measure in my mind 
the extent of evil, there rose towards me the most awful, the dreariest of all the plaints I have 
ever heard. The land was moaning, the rugged rocks frowning, the tree trunks and branches 
twisting themselves as in agony, and the breeze was carrying their lamentation upwards in 
a prolonged wail which sounded terrible, accompanied by the lugubrious voice of a bird 
which seemed to cry : ' Cur-lew . . . cur-lew . . .' in such a mournful, pitiful 
tone, such a long sad cr3^ that I felt a shudder ; men and beasts, mountains, and plants, 
helpless, speechless, groaning, weeping, gasping, dying. Oh, what a spectacle ! It will 
never be erased from my mind, but will rise to my remembrance every time I shall hear of 
my omnipotence. I was there, listening powerless, unable to cope at once with the evil. 


I felt that it woiikl be madness to decree the destruction of that world, it would be to stop 
progress in its course, to ask Nature to go back on her own work, to begin it afresh, to play 
with time and labour, and would be an act of cowardice unworthy of a God. I was thinking, 
and the more I contemplated the desolation in its ugly contortions, the longer I listened to 
the horrid slow moan of woe, the fainter and fainter grew my heart. I did not remain long 
in that immobility. I felt that some solace might be given, that a little goes a long way when 
it comes from a sympathetic heart; so I went to the land, seized her by the highest summit 
of her mountains of lapis lazuli ,and gave her the warmest kiss of my heart. I had scarcely 
touched her with my lips when she began to tremble with emotion, everything living looked 
at me with admiration, the flowers of the mountains aspired towards me and reddened under 
my look, whilst the wattle of the valleys became yellow with jealousy and rage at not being 
able to catch sight of mo. I then got up, and was just going to depart when I saw that at 
the place touched by my lips, gorgeous and superb flowers had sprung up out of the bare rock, 
and were there rising before me in all their beauty, all their splendour. I plucked one of them 
to bring to thee, Atah, as a souvenir of thy sympathy for thy land, as a token of my love and 
my sincere wish to do all in my power to give back to her the happiness she has lost by the 
will of Destiny." 

Thus speaking, War offered Atah one of the red tlowers which had been born under his 

That fiower was the one we all know. 

" What name hast thou given to this marvd? " inquired Atah. 

" I have given it none," said War, " I thought only of bringing it to my sweet child, 
my beloved Atah." 

" Well, my God," said she, " My adoreil master, my tender lover, let it be known 
henceforth by the glorious rame of WAR-ATAH." 


Tasmanian Waratah Legend. 

^SITBOUT fifty years ago, as the story goes, a native family dwelt in Amboo's Bottom, in 
S^J the pretty district of Glenorchy, a few miles from Hobart town. Attawa was blessed 
with a dutiful daughter, the flower of the tribe. Beset with suitors and constantly 
attended by admirers, she was bewildered like other ladies in the maze of flattery, and knew 
not upon whom to bestow her angelic qualities. The tall and graceful Amboo reheved her 
from her perplexity. Who had whiter teeth, nobler limbs, better greased and ochred 
ringlets? Who could so exquisitely give the tremulous shake of the thigh in the moonlight 
corroboree, so adroitly waddy the feather throng, so fleetly chase the kangaroo? More 
than all, who could so chant a love lament, so whisper a moving tale, or so gaze at her? 
It is enough. Makooi is vanquished, and Amboo is the conqueror. But jealousy is cruel, 
the revenge of other devoteer- is to be feared, the public opinion of the tribe always supreme, 
might may forbid the banns. 

What was to be done? In Tartary the lady is mounted upon the best horse and given 
a distance. The suitors then ride after, and he who catches wins. There a lady has a 
chance of going too much on one particular side, making a false step at a convenient place, 
or using any one or other of these ruses of the gentle art of courtship which may secure 
her choice. Poor Makooi had recourse to a poe'.ical expedient. She proposed to her lovers 
that at sunrise in the morning they were to search in the Derwent for a flower which she 
would drop into the waters at night, and that with him who should bring back the same, 
she would share the leafy gunyah for hfe. It was full moon when this dark Flora of the 
Forest hills gathered the gorgeous favourite Waratah, and carried it to the rocky margin 
of the river. Without a faith she had no god, no patron saint to invocate. But her heart 
pulsed forth " Amboo " as the moon's beams softened the scarlet of the floating floral beauty. 

The tide bore on the precious freight. The hills glowed at the first glance of the sun, 
and the bank was trodden and the stream scanned by eager searchers. The day passed; 
one after another returned, but the flower was not presented. Only one was absent — ■ 
the ardent Amboo. Hopes for his success were now mixed with fears for his safety in the 
breast of the maiden. He came not; he never came. The flower was not brought to the 
sweet gully of Glenorchy, and Makooi was free. Alarm for the lost one sent the tribe in 
search. A violent storm on the trial day had removed the track of the Tasmanian Adonis 
and the search was in vain. The heart-broken girl hngered for a few months, and the 
trailing Kennedya lay its crimson blossoms on her tomb. 

About the year 1832 some persons were quarrying on the banks of the Derwent, not 
far below the scene of our story. A huge block had fallen from the top of the rock. 
Removing this they discovered a human skeleton, and tightly clasped within its bony 
fingers was a withered flower-stalk. Might this not have been the remains of Makooi's 
lover, who, seeking shelter under the rock from that eventful day's storm, was crushed by 
the mass detached from the hill? 

Coloured pUte, omj d '^d~^ . 

■ -^^§- ^^ shoulcl be ^ig. g2. 

olourecl pistes, (Buckles) Pig 51 and 7^ 

g. oiaiid 53 were designed 

^ _^ ^3- Mr. G. Toms. 




1 9.1 5 . ^ 


New Yorti BoMnlcal G«rden Lib.sry 

NK1560.B3 ^^^ » . , 

Baker, Richard Thorn/The Australi.. 

3 5185 00080 1